EAC states tighten anti-money laundering laws

Nairobi- The East African Community member states are drafting tougher regulations on money laundering targeting firms registered in tax havens and jurisdictions with bank secrecy.
Companies with shareholders represented by nominee accounts will have to disclose the beneficial owners when they open accounts in banks or stock market intermediaries such as brokers and investment banks, under the draft policy.

The Kenya Association of Stockbrokers and Investment Banks chief executive, Mr Willie Njoroge, said stock market intermediaries saw the proposals as important, but added there was risk of delayed securities transactions.

“The only thing we see is that there could be delays in the market as some transactions may need the approval of the regulator. There are many companies where shareholding is held by nominee accounts and whose real owners are currently unknown,” said Njoroge.

The new proposals have been made and agreed upon by the East African Community (EAC)apital markets regulators. The proposals will be discussed by the Finance ministers of the EAC region in November and the law is expected to be implemented in the same month next year.

editorial@ug.nationmedia.com

SOURCE: Daily Monitor

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