Singapore central bank to set up dedicated teams to combat money laundering

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) will set up dedicated departments to combat money laundering and strengthen enforcement, it said on June 13, 2016.
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) will set up dedicated departments to combat money laundering and strengthen enforcement, it said on June 13, 2016.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) will set up dedicated departments to combat money laundering and strengthen enforcement, it said on Monday.

This will take effect on Aug 1.

Singapore's financial sector faces the risk of being used as a conduit for money laundering and terrorist financing activities, the banking regulator said.

"While MAS has in place a robust regime to protect the integrity of Singapore's financial system, the increasing complexities of transnational flows necessitates heightened supervisory focus on combatting money laundering and other illicit financing activities," it added.

MAS will form a dedicated anti-money laundering department, as well as a dedicated supervisory team will be set up to monitor these risks and carry out onsite supervision of how financial institutions manage these risks. These functions used to be carried out by different departments in MAS.

MAS will also centralise its enforcement functions under a new Enforcement Department.

The new department will continue to jointly investigate capital markets misconduct offences with the Commercial Affairs Department.

In addition, the new department will be responsible for enforcement actions arising from regulatory breaches of MAS' banking, insurance and capital markets regulations.