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The AMLChas increased the monitoring process on FX declarations. All the inbound and outbound channels are a part of the tracking process with increased monitoring of traveler’s exchanges.
As a strict measure against money laundering activities and cash smuggling, AMLC has reported imposing a strict monitory process on FX trading. The Philippines is at a higher risk of becoming a source of illegal funding unless the declaration process of the foreign exchanges is made more detailed with regular reports to the authorities, stated AMLC in their report.
The Central Bank of the Philippines, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), and the Bureau of Customs (BOC) are already in charge of monitoring illicit activities such as money laundering and terror financing. However, there are still concerns about high volumes of cash smuggling via the inbound and outbound channels of FX flows.
The study review is conducted by AMLC in April and primarily focuses on the foreign exchange monetary elements and forex currencies that enter the state through international gateways including airports and seaports. It clearly stated insights into the money that is “transported into and out of the country, as well as the frequency of these large-value transactions, magnify the need to examine the prominent trends and patterns that may aid in the early detection of ML/TF threats originating overseas.”
The reports by the BOC included $10,000 of voluntarily disclosed FX declaration by the travelers. The April report of the AMLC is the three-quarter study on FX declarations in the country. It shows the accumulated data of exchanges from 2015 to the Q3 of 2021. All the frequencies, patterns, trends of flow, amounts of declarations, sources, and destinations were a part of the data presented by the report.
The AMLC study pointed out multiple sources of smuggling network activities including casino-related transactions, unusual trips, and pilgrimage-related transactions.
AMLC said: “For individual passengers, frequent inbound flows of foreign currencies to be used for casino gambling breeds suspicion that warrants further examination,”
As a strict measure to prevent casino gambling and other unlawful activities, AMLC wants close cooperation with the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. or PAGCOR. It stated that to process the issues related to money laundering, BOC, and AMLC should develop electronic forms to input the predetermined values and codes.
“This development may not only ease the validation process but also improve analysts’ access to FX declarations,” said AMLC.