Setting up the new EU Anti-Money Laundering Authority for success

16 May 2024 Press Release

Derville Rowland, Deputy Governor, Consumer and Investor Protection

Speaking at the European Anti-Financial Crime Summit today, Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Ireland Derville Rowland said: “The commitment of European leaders to introduce a single rulebook for Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and the creation of a new European AML supervisory and financial intelligence coordination authority is truly historic, and we are at an inflection point in the journey of financial crime prevention. 

“The creation of this authority (AMLA) is a significant step in the right direction to confront the challenges we face, today and tomorrow.  It presents a unique opportunity to grasp the nettle of regulatory fragmentation and eliminate the weak points in the current European AML Framework. However, we should not be complacent in assuming that AMLA’s success in combatting money laundering is guaranteed.”

 The Deputy Governor said that to realise AMLA’s full potential as the fulcrum of an effective and responsive EU AML framework, there were a number of critical factors. 

These include the need for AMLA to have a clear mandate and adequate powers; strong governance and operational independence; and sufficient skills and capabilities to identify, manage and mitigate the risks and vulnerabilities in the European system.

 “AMLA needs to employ a risk-based approach from the outset, while tackling divergent approaches across jurisdictions. This is a big challenge.  We need to ensure that we strive to be holistic but not too homogenous in approach. 

“It will be critical to success that AMLA should not attempt to create everything from scratch and should work off existing initiatives, including existing and new relationships to be built with law enforcement across the EU and with other EU institutions. 

“History has taught us that no system is entirely ‘future proof’ and vigilance, agility and innovation are constantly required. Since the first AML Directive was enacted in 1991, the legislative landscape has continuously developed.  AMLA will need to ensure that this process of evolution continues. 

“I greatly look forward to AMLA’s progress and the Central Bank of Ireland will play our part in meeting our shared objectives to combat money laundering and terrorist financing.”

 Deputy Governor Rowland's speech can be read in full here