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New Zealand Parliament has unanimously passed reforms to strengthen the existing Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act 2009, says Justice Minister Amy Adams.

“Money laundering and the financing of terrorism is a global issue with serious consequences. It is blight on society that undermines the hard work of legitimate businesses by allowing criminals to fund their lifestyles and fuel re-investment into criminal activities,” says Ms Adams.

New Zealand took a step this week to strengthen its Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) laws with an amendment that extended AML/CFT coverage to include to lawyers, conveyancers, accountants, real estate agents, sports and racing betting and some retailers of high-end goods.

Expansion is critical with the explosion of outlets, channels and startups with AML/CFT potential. In neighboring Australia, for instance, KPMG reported that FinTech startups have increased to 579 companies this year, from fewer than 100 just three years ago. According to KPMG:

  • Investment in the Australian FinTech sector was US$675 million in 2016, up 10x from five years ago.
  • The FinTech ecosystem has spawned 10 sub-sectors from crowdfunding to capital markets, each with 20 or more startups.
  • Established categories continue to grow even with the emergence of RegTech, Blockchain and InsurTech.

The exciting growth in these established and emerging markets validates the need for a comprehensive global risk information exchange (GRIX). Global sanctions and due diligence risk data sources are expanding also. Relying on the limited collection of first generation data sets with manual updates will not keep pace with the emerging opportunities facing today’s business ecosystem. Failure to properly vet these new endeavors will lead either to unnecessary risk or missed opportunity. And either can dramatically hurt your business.

Read more on this story at: www.national.org.nz