Following the expiration of a 31 August 2013 registration deadline, the Financial Services Commission (FSC) has reported a satisfactory number of designated non financial businesses and professions that have complied with their obligation to register.
Designated non financial business and professions (DNFBP) is the collective name for a group of businesses and professions, namely lawyers, accountants, realtors and dealers in high value goods.
During the initial DNFBP registration and anti-money laundering and combat of terrorism financing (AML/CTF) sensitisation phase, focus remained with the existing businesses of lawyers, accountants and real estate agents. Seventy-six firms were initially identified as falling under the supervisory responsibilities of the Commission and in need of training and registration. To date, 68 of those firms have fulfilled their primary obligation of registration and are now required to adopt the various prerequisites to operate their businesses.
Commenting on the process initiated few months ago, Kevin Higgins, managing director of the FSC said, “I am delighted that we have reached such a successful milestone with DNFBPs and know that registration of this group is an important step in maintaining the reputation of the Turks and Caicos Islands as a high quality financial centre.”
This process fulfils the FSC’s immediate responsibility as the designated supervisory authority and enables closer liaison with registrants in such matters as emerging money laundering trends as well as compliance reviews.
In a further step forward, the FSC has now referred one non-registrant to the director of public prosecutions for legal action for the commission of an offence under the Proceeds of Crime Ordinance by failing to submit their completed registration application by the deadline date provided.
The FSC, having almost completed the registration of DNFBPs, will commence a further awareness campaign for nonprofit organisations to alert and provide support to meet the risk of misuse of funds raised from the general public.
The FSC said it views the commencement of work with nonprofit organisations as enhancing its commitment towards managing the global threat of money laundering and terrorist financing.