The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas will soon issue a circular that will strengthen regulations on anti-money laundering.
Bangko Sentral Deputy Governor Nestor Espenilla Jr. said the new circular would be issued in the next couple of days.
“There’s one on amendments to the implementing, updated rules on money laundering. So that’s coming. It’s actually already approved by the Monetary Board so it’s in the process of issuance. It should be issued maybe later this week or early next week,” Espenilla said.
Espenilla said the new circular would be aligned with the implementing rules and regulations on the anti-money laundering law that was amended late last year.
“We’re also incorporating there new recommendations of the FATF [Financial Action Task Force] that allow more flexibility on customer onboarding. So in particular what I find important and exciting there is …it would allow flexibility on the online KYC [know-your-customers process],” Espenilla said.
The Financial Action Task Force or Groupe d’action financière is an intergovernmental organization founded in 1989 on the initiative of G7 to develop policies to combat money laundering
Espenilla said the online KYC could be a major step to bring unbanked customers into the financial system much easier, especially those located in remote areas.
Espenilla said the new circular was already approved by the Monetary Board two weeks ago and was scheduled for signing by Bangko Sentral Governor Amando Tetangco Jr.
The initiative was the latest from Bangko Sentral after the domestic banking system was rocked by the $81-million money laundering scam in February last year. The dirty money, according to Senate investigations, was stolen by cyber thieves from the account of Bank of Bangladesh in Federal Reserve in New York.
The stolen money entered the Philippine financial system through a branch of Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. on Jupiter Street in Makati City.