UAE central bank issues AML/CTF guidance for dealing with virtual assets

On Wednesday, the UAE Central Bank announced the issuance of updated guidelines addressing anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing measures for financial institutions in their interactions with virtual assets, including cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens.

The newly released guidance comprehensively examines the risks associated with engaging in transactions involving virtual assets and virtual asset service providers. It specifically highlights the importance of due diligence for licensed financial institutions when dealing with customers and counterparties involved in these activities, emphasizing the need for heightened scrutiny.

The guidelines, scheduled to be implemented within a month, extend their applicability to various financial entities, including banks, finance companies, exchange houses, payment service providers, registered hawala providers, and insurance companies, agents, and brokers.

The Central Bank underscores that the guidance adheres to the standards set forth by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), ensuring alignment with international best practices in combating money laundering and terrorism financing.

With these updated guidelines, the UAE Central Bank aims to reinforce the robustness of its financial ecosystem, mitigating risks associated with virtual assets and bolstering the overall security and integrity of the financial sector.

Read more: Reuters