Anti-Money laundering and CFT in SADC countries

FinMark Trust commissioned and funded the development of the focus notes contained in this report in order to highlight key considerations relating to anti-money laundering (AML) and combating the financing of terrorism (CFT) in 13 Southern African Development Community (SADC) countries. This was undertaken in light of findings from a detailed review of the regulatory frameworks in these jurisdictions.

In various studies undertaken by FinMark Trust, the implications of AML and CFT regulatory requirements are often cited as a constraint to the development, growth and access to financial services and products. It has been reasoned that an inappropriate or inconsistently applied regulatory environment for domestic and cross border AML/CFT controls has a detrimental impact on the strategic objective of increasing financial integration and access to financial services within the region.

FinMark Trust would like to investigate whether the harmonisation and more appropriate calibration of the AML/CFT regulations across and within the SADC countries could enhance legal certainty and regulatory predictability. It has been motivated that, in the light of the expansion of African and international financial service providers in the SADC region, this legal harmonisation would have a positive impact on the development and release of financial services and products in the region.

The following focus notes, covering AML/CFT regulatory requirements in the SADC countries, have been developed to draw attention to key matters:

  • Focus Note 1 – Financial inclusion and AML/CFT;
  • Focus Note 2 – Risk-based approaches to AML/CFT;
  • Focus Note 3 – AML / CFT due diligence and related matters;
  • Focus Note 4 – Mobile services / technology; and
  • Focus Note 5 – Harmonisation of regulatory frameworks in the SADC region.

A brief description of each of the focus notes is set out in this report.