Regional conference on beneficial ownership gathers 18 African countries representatives in Zambia
Lusaka, 13 September 2022 – The EU Global Facility on Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (EU GF-AML/CFT) on Tuesday,13th September 2022 kicked off a regional event on Beneficial Ownership (BO) in the field of anti-money laundering and counter terrorist financing, in collaboration with the Eastern and Southern Africa Anti-Money Laundering Group (ESAAMLG) Secretariat and the Financial Intelligence Centre of the Republic of Zambia (FIC).
Held under the title “Regional Workshop on Enhancing Beneficial Ownership Frameworks: Evolving Technical Standard and their Effective Implementation”, the three-day event is witnessing the participation of 80 representatives from 18 countries of the African continent, as well as a number of attendees online.
In her opening remarks, Acting Director General of the FIC, Liya Tembo commended a “timely workshop that represents a key milestone towards improved systems to tackle corruption, tax evasion, money laundering and terrorism financing in the ESAAMLG region”. She emphasised the need for enhanced cooperation and shared BO Information related to financial and economic crimes, encouraging countries to “build systems and learn about what other countries are doing to change legislation, how they maintain accurate and update BO information and how this information should be shared with stakeholders in the value chain of AML/CFT regime.”
For his part, EU Global Facility Team Leader David Hotte, welcomed the participation of representatives from 18 countries, saying “it is particularly impressive to witness the attendance of so many countries, which shows African nations’ committment to the enhancement of beneficial ownership frameworks within their respective jurisdictions. I am confident that these three days of exchanges will yield great results with regards to transparency of legal persons and legal arrangements.”
The workshop, which will consist of interactive exchanges and thematic presentations, will allow participants to exchange best practices and further deepen their expertise on BO-related matters.
“Due to the current challenges faced by countries in understanding the issues of BO, the ESAAMLG is having 18 of its member countries participate in this important event aimed at building more awareness on how countries can comply with the Financial Action Task Force’s standards on BO and how to implement relevant measures. Our Secretariat is confident that the workshop will go a long way in assisting members to come up with effective systems to handle BO,” stated Expert Joseph Jagada from the ESAAMLG secretariat.
The conference is part of a series of technical assistance activities delivered by the EU GF-AML/CFT to third countries around the world. Demand driven and tailored made, the support is provided on a bilateral, regional and thematic basis. As of September 2022, the project has delivered bilateral assistance to 16 countries globally.
The regional workshop “Enhancing Effectiveness of Beneficial Ownership Frameworks: Evolving Technical Standard and their Effective Implementation” will take place in a hybrid format (onsite and online) on 13-15 September 2022 in Lusaka, Zambia.
The regional event is co-organised by the EU Global Facility on AML/CFT, the ESAAMLG Secretariat and the Financial Intelligence Centre of the Republic of Zambia (FIC).
The workshop has been designed to allow participants to exchange and further their expertise in the following areas :
- The FATF and EU standards related to beneficial ownership and the transparency of legal persons (LP) and legal arrangements (LA),
- The importance of country-wide assessments of the ML/TF risks associated with LP/LA as well, the methodology developed by the Global Facility and case studies presented by Ghana, Mauritius and the United Kingdom,
- The role (public) beneficial ownership registers is expected to play in future AML/CFT frameworks, the Global Facility’s methodology for their implementation as well as country case studies,
- The role of FI/DNFBP in ensuring the availability and accessibility of beneficial ownership information within a jurisdiction,
- The practical tools and solutions available to supervisors to design and implement risk-based supervision strategies on beneficial ownership identification/verification obligations,
- The practical considerations and concrete actions a jurisdiction can take when implementing a ML/TF risk assessment of LP/LA, engaging in a ESAAMLG Mutual Evaluation and/or implementing an FATF/ICRG Action Plan.