Responsible and Trusted Financial Centre

Combatting Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing

MAS published information paper on “Strengthening AML/CFT Practices for External Asset Managers”

24 August 2022 

The information paper followed a series of anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) thematic inspections and engagements conducted by MAS of selected external asset managers (EAMs). It sets out MAS’ supervisory expectations for effective AML/CFT frameworks and controls for EAMs.  

MAS continued to work with the financial industry to combat money laundering and terrorism financing (ML/TF) risks

Ongoing

  • MAS conducted an industry-wide survey of variable capital companies (VCCs) and a series of thematic engagements of eligible financial institutions (FIs) to assess the effectiveness of their AML/CFT risk management and controls. Key observations and supervisory expectations for effective AML/CFT frameworks and controls for VCCs and eligible FIs were published on MAS’ website in September 2022. 
  • MAS reminded all FIs to stay vigilant to the ML/TF risks in the wealth management sector and to review their existing controls, to ensure that they remain adequate to mitigate the ML/TF risks from high growth areas.
  • MAS supported a trust industry working group (comprising representatives from licensed trust companies (LTCs) and professional intermediaries, with MAS as an observer) in the formulation of a best practice paper that LTCs can adopt to manage the ML/TF risks associated with complex trust structures. 
  • MAS conducted an industry-wide survey of CFT-related controls, and followed up with a series of thematic reviews to assess FIs’ TF risk understanding and examine the effectiveness of their CFT-related controls. Key observations and our supervisory expectations that FIs should review were published on MAS’ website in May 2023. 

Singapore published a five-pronged strategy to CFT

7 October 2022

Singapore published a five-pronged strategy to prevent, detect, investigate, and enforce against TF. The National Strategy for Countering the Financing of Terrorism provided a roadmap for the development of future action plans to combat TF. The National CFT Strategy was formulated based on findings from a holistic assessment of TF risks conducted in 2020.  MAS was closely involved in the formulation of this National CFT strategy, which seeks to enhance coordination across law enforcement agencies, policy makers, regulators, supervisory agencies and the private sector.  

MAS actively contributed to shaping international AML/CFT standards and strengthening effectiveness at combating ML/TF

Ongoing 

MAS continued to be active at the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).  Singapore had taken on the FATF Presidency from 1 July 2022, for a term of two years. 

The FATF President, Mr T Raja Kumar, Senior Advisor (International) at the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), is supported by a dedicated team of experts from MAS and MHA. As part of Singapore’s FATF Presidency priorities, Mr Kumar and his team will drive effective global implementation of the FATF Standards, including on asset recovery and AML/CFT controls on virtual assets service providers (VASPs) or digital payment token service providers. 

As co-chair of the FATF Policy Development Group, MAS was responsible for driving further changes to global AML/CFT standards, including enhancements to promote transparency of beneficial ownership for legal persons, and supporting countries’ implementation of the FATF Standards for VASPs.