EU anti-money laundering rules should be updated and strengthened after the European Commission published proposals for two anti-money laundering regulations (AML) and a revision of the current EU AML directive. The European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) welcomes the proposals and reiterates its commitment to work with all relevant regulatory bodies, including the European Commission, to combat money laundering in the EU.
The Commission's proposals follow the concerns and criticisms of recent years that some EU member states have not sufficiently implemented and applied the current European anti-money laundering regulation. While the proposed regulations are primarily aimed at financial services, some proposed changes are expected to affect the European online gaming industry as well, including beneficial ownership rules, customer due diligence and the establishment of a new anti-money laundering authority in the EU.
The legislative package will now go through the EU legislative process and will be sent to the European Parliament and the Council for discussion and, ultimately, approval, which could take up to 18 months. Once approved, the Regulation will immediately enter into force in all EU Member States, with the Directive which must be transposed into national legislation by the Member States.
EGBA will analyze the future implications of the proposed changes to the compliance requirements of the online gaming industry in Europe. To ensure the best possible application of the EU anti-money laundering regulation, the EGBA is preparing a set of sectoral guidelines for online gaming companies, which will be published in the second half of 2021.
“We welcome the European Commission's efforts to continuously improve the EU framework for combating money laundering. EGBA members already apply the highest regulatory standards for AML compliance and are fully committed to fighting money laundering in the online gaming industry. To support this, we are working closely with our members to develop industry-specific guidelines at the EU level to help European online gaming companies comply with the increasingly complex AML rules in the EU” said Ekaterina Hartmann of the EGBA.