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Department of Finance has announced the start date for South Africa’s new Anti Money Laundering and Countering Terrorism Financing (AML/CTF) laws to better comply with global standards set by FATF.
The department noted that the commencement of laws would be split into two parts:
- 29 December 2022: Sections 9, 10, 16, 18 to 55, 59, and 62 to 65;
- 1 April 2023: Sections 1, 3, 4, 5, 8, 11 to 15, 17, 56, 57, 58, 60 and 61;
- Sections 2 and 6 also come into effect from 1 April, with the exception of some subsections.
Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana said that “the laws address deficiencies in at least 14 of the 20 recommendations, including an appropriate enhancement of powers and procedures for regulatory authorities”.
South Africa had to take essential remedial steps to avoid FATF’s greylisting until October 2022. Otherwise, it would become difficult for countries to do business with South Africa.
According to National Treasury, the new laws could be helpful to avoid South Africa being greylisted by FATF. It also stated that having a financial system compliant with AML/CTF was in the public interest.
However, some analysts and legal experts are doubtful whether the changes and complexity in new laws would help South Africa or add more loopholes to be out from the greylist.
The FATF would decide if South Africa has done enough to be removed from the list in February 2023.