Latvian banking sector started a significant and comprehensive improvement process in 2016 to ensure highest standards in countering money laundering and terrorist financing (AML/CFT) as well as sustainable development of the banking sector. The improvement of the compliance process is carried out both by the Association of Commercial Banks (ALCB) and by each bank individually.
Commitment of ALCB is to achieve the highest AML/CFT compliance standards among member banks within the next 2 to 3 years.
Improvements fall into five main compliance categories:
In October 2017, the Council of ALCB has approved Policy Guidance and Guidelines on Anti-Money Laundering, Countering Terrorism Financing and Enforcement of Sanctions. This marks a new direction of activities of the ALCB and confirms high professional maturity of the banking industry.
The ALCB will follow the implementation of guidelines by the members of the ALCB and, based on risk assessment and the development of generally accepted standards, will develop the existing guidelines or, if necessary, issue new guidelines.
Latvia Banking Compliance Status Review provides an industry level overview of the accomplishments in the field of compliance since 2016, as well as future plans of the Association and the industry in general.
During 2016, 11 member banks of the Association undertook independent AML/CFT compliance reviews conducted by the US based compliance firms (Navigant, Exiger and Lewis Baach Kaufmann Middlemiss). Following the reviews, the banks adopted remediation plans to implement the improvements needed to reach full compliance with US standards on top of the EU applicable standards.
The aim of the review was to ensure that the highest industry standards were met, highlighting the areas for improvement. Good results are seen due to applying increased AML/CFT standards:
Individual factsheets by member bank are providing detailed information on major enhancements in AML/CFT compliance and other key developments.
Signet Bank (previous name - Bank M2M Europe)
ALCB organize the AML/CFT Workshop on November 28, 2017. The discussion will address AML/CFT compliance topics to encourage the debate devoted to AML/CFT excellence and best practices exchanging views about latest US and UK initiatives to combat financial crime. The Agenda on AML/CFT Workshop please find here.