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ISLAMABAD: The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has issued new requirements applicable to the foreign branches of regulated entities and their subsidiaries under the Anti Money Laundering regulations.

The SECP has issued updated Anti Money Laundering, Combating the Financing of Terrorism (CFT) and Countering Proliferation Financing (CPF) Regulations, 2020.

The “regulated person” means securities brokers, futures brokers, Insurers, Takaful Operators, NBFCs and Modarabas regulated by SECP under the administered legislation.

The updated provisions encompass guidelines regarding the reliance on third parties for the customers’ due diligence, as well as specific requirements applicable to the foreign branches of regulated entities and their subsidiaries.

Under the revised regulations, the regulated person shall ensure that their foreign branches and majority-owned subsidiaries in countries which do not sufficiently apply the FATF recommendations, apply AML, CFT & CPF measures consistent with Pakistan’s AML/CFT/CPF requirements, to the extent that host country laws and regulations permit. If the foreign country does not permit the proper implementation of AML/CFT measures consistent with that of Pakistan requirements, financial groups should apply appropriate additional measures to manage the risks, and inform the Commission when a foreign branch or subsidiary is unable to observe appropriate AML/CFT measures.

The SECP has introduced important amendments to the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) Regulations, 2020. The notified amendments aim to enhance the scope of regulations to effectively combat financial crimes, control money laundering, and combat the financing of terrorism (CFT) while ensuring the integrity of its financial system.

The amendments to the SECP AML/CFT Regulations 2020 are the outcome of the National Risk Assessment 2023, in which SECP conducted a self-assessment of its AML/CFT regulatory framework against the criteria used in the FATF Assessment Methodology for assessing Technical Compliance of its AML/CFT regulatory framework.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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