3.8 billion dirhams penalties and fines for combating money laundering and terrorist financing

An increase of 150% in the number of full-time employees in the Central Enforcement Department.

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The total value of operations and procedures for combating money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism, during the year 2021, amounted to an estimated 1.048 billion dollars (3.848 billion dirhams), according to data of the Executive Office to Combat Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing.

These sums were distributed between “asset confiscation” worth $625 million, fines for non-compliance with anti-money laundering and terrorist financing worth $64 million, passing through a $5.3 million penalty on major financial institutions in the UAE, and penalties of $10.8 million on many individuals who They were found guilty of tax evasion and money laundering, confiscation of $109 million as preventive measures to combat terrorist financing, and a collective fine of $234 million on 48 defendants and companies owed in one case by Abu Dhabi courts for money laundering and fraud.

The Director General of the Executive Office to Combat Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing, Hamed Al Zaabi, said that these data demonstrate significant progress in strengthening the UAE's approach to combating money laundering and terrorist financing, in line with international standards, and its commitment to combating financial crime as a national priority.

He said that at the legislative level, a number of major legal amendments were made during the last period, such as the amendment to the money laundering law, to include broader powers regarding confiscations, in addition to setting controls for virtual assets, which is one of the most important amendments at the level of the region. Currently working on issuing an amendment to the executive regulations of the Anti-Money Laundering Law, in addition to the amendments to the Security Council listing system, in order to combat the financing of terrorism and strengthen the system of targeted financial sanctions. He indicated that the office achieved an increase in supervisory inspections to combat money laundering and terrorist financing by about 6300 compared to 2,812 supervisory inspections in 2019. In addition, 5,529 desk inspections were carried out.

He pointed to an increase of 150% in the number of full-time employees in the Enforcement Department of the Central Bank of the Emirates, and about an 85% increase in resources within the Financial Information Unit, as well as an increase in the number of employees with experience in combating money laundering and terrorist financing in each competent authority in the UAE.

• “Asset confiscation” worth $625 million, and fines for non-compliance amounting to $64 million.

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