The Centre of Excellence in Anti-Money Laundering starts its activities in Lithuania. Bringing together representatives of both the public and private sectors, it aims to lift anti-money laundering practices implemented in the country to a whole new level.
Enhancement of competencies for anti-money laundering purposes
The Centre of Excellence in Anti-Money Laundering will share information on money laundering and terrorist financing (ML/TF) typologies and set up a dedicated information exchange platform to help financial market participants properly identify and manage their risks. It will also carry out studies, assessments and analyses, prepare guidelines, recommendations, methodologies and legislative initiatives to improve the AML/CTF framework in Lithuania. The Centre will assist private sector entities in conducting internal risk assessment, strengthen public and private sectors’ competencies in the field of AML/CTF, organise training, seminars, conferences and other events as well as publish information on its activities.
“The new AML centre will contribute to strengthening the reputation of Lithuania and all Baltic states. We also hope that it will let FinTech companies to avoid punishment by imposing heavy administrative penalties and fines by regulators”, – says Inga Karulaitytė, attorney at law and a certified AML expert of ECOVIS ProventusLaw.
Although there are currently around 20 anti-money laundering centres based on a public-private partnership around the globe, the Lithuanian model is quite unique as it takes the fight against money laundering to the national level.
The Centre is founded by the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Lithuania, the Bank of Lithuania and commercial banks (SEB bankas, AB, Swedbank, AB, Šiaulių bankas, AB, Luminor Bank AS Lithuanian branch, Medicinos bankas, UAB, Revolut Bank, UAB, AS Citadele banka Lithuanian branch and OP Corporate Bank plc Lithuanian branch). The Financial Crime Investigation Service, the Police Department, the State Tax Inspectorate and the Prosecutor General’s Office are also expected to take joint action with the Centre, while in the near future other financial market participants, such as electronic money and payment institutions, will be invited to join its activities as well.
The Centre’s activities will be financed by annual contributions made by the Bank of Lithuania and representatives of the private sector.
AML / KYC Compliance Services offered by ECOVIS ProventusLaw
ECOVIS ProventusLaw also provides full assistance in the field of ML / TF prevention and compliance: ML /TF risk assessment, independent AML audit, AML training, developing of internal policies, procedures and controls, compliance officer services. AML issues are addressed by ECOVIS ProventusLaw lawyers and subject matter experts working in the fields of Financial Services, Licensing and Regulatory, IT and Data Protection, Tax, Compliance, Company Law and Labour Law. The team involves certified ACAMS, internal audit and data protection officers.
Moreover, ECOVIS ProventusLaw provides internal audit services for financial institutions to assess whether the policies, procedures and processes meet regulatory requirements and work the way they have been designed. The Internal Audit Team of ECOVIS ProventusLaw consists of experts in IT & Cyber Security, Compliance, Finance, Legal Services, Risk Management, Anti-Money Laundering, GDPR fields.
The lawyers of ECOVIS ProventusLaw have also gained considerable experience in assessing legal risks pertaining to financial activities or financial operations, in representing clients in relations with the Bank of Lithuania, the Financial Crime Investigation Service and other surveillance authorities as well as in advising on e-payment issues. Where certain issues span multiple jurisdictions, we offer the assistance of partners from the international ECOVIS network operating in over 75 countries worldwide.