New EU AML Package Will Benefit Online Operators, Says EGBA

June 3, 2024
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The European Council’s approval of the EU’s package of new anti-money-laundering (AML) regulations will benefit online gambling operators by standardising AML rules and reporting requirements, according to the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA).
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The European Council’s approval of the EU’s package of new anti-money-laundering (AML) regulations will benefit online gambling operators by standardising AML rules and reporting requirements, according to the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA).

The new rules in the new Anti-Money Laundering Regulation (AMLR) would bring changes that impact the gambling industry, as actors in the industry are listed as obliged entities and the new regulation strengthens the rules that apply to them. 

Specific provisions also apply to gambling services.

One key change is a requirement for gambling services to carry out customer due diligence measures on customers transacting €2,000 or more.

The threshold is met “regardless of whether the customer carries out a single transaction of at least that amount or several smaller transactions which add up to that amount”.

The AMLR will apply three years after its entry into force. Member states will have two years to transpose some parts of the directive included in the package and three years for other parts. 

The package was approved by the European Parliament last month and its approval by the Council on May 30 was the final step in the adoption procedure.

A new Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism Authority (AMLA) in Europe will be established and have supervisory powers over high-risk obliged entities in the financial sector.

The new authority will also develop technical standards and new guidelines to build on existing EU anti-money laundering rules.

Belgian minister for finance, Vincent Van Peteghem, said the new “stricter rules” will strengthen AML systems.

“A new agency (AMLA) based in Frankfurt will supervise the work of actors involved. This will ensure that fraudsters, organised crime and terrorists will have no space left for legitimising their proceeds through the financial system.”

The AMLA will start operations in mid-2025. 

The EGBA’s director of legal and regulatory affairs, Dr. Ekaterina Hartmann, said it has “actively followed and contributed to the revision of the AML rules at EU-level and believes the new rules will benefit Europe’s online gambling operators, especially those operating in multiple jurisdictions, by ensuring a single regulatory approach across EU member states.”

“With finalisation of the new rules, EGBA will review and update its industry guidelines on AML to ensure their alignment with the rules,” Hartmann said.

The EGBA published its first pan-European online gambling AML guidelines on March 6, 2023, and its members were given six months from the date of its publication to implement the guidance, something they agreed upon before its publication.

“Since the guidelines take into account the European Commission’s original AMLR proposal, EGBA members are already making significant progress towards compliance with the new EU rules. The guidelines will be updated to match the final versions of the EU legislation,” the EGBA said.

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