Turkey, Economy

Turkey announces new measures against financial crimes

Measures based on FATF's recommendations, says Banks Association of Turkey

Gokhan Ergocun   | 15.04.2020
Turkey announces new measures against financial crimes

ISTANBUL

Turkey's Financial Crimes Investigation Board (MASAK) has introduced new measures against money laundering and terror financing, the Banks' Association of Turkey (TBB) said on Wednesday.

The measures are based on the Financial Action Task Force (FATF)'s call to strengthen controls over anti-money laundering (AML), anti-financial crime (AFC), and terrorist financing (TF).

The association said that the FATF asked Turkey to "develop a national strategy for confiscating the proceeds and instrumentalities of crime, outlining clear priorities as well as the roles and responsibilities for prosecutors, LEAs [Law Enforcement Agencies] and MASAK."

"Turkey should increase the number of parallel financial investigations in terrorism cases with the objective of identifying terrorist financiers, TF trends and methods, and financing networks," it said.

The FATF also published new guidelines for countries to address coronavirus-related financial crime risks, i.e., remain vigilant and introduce measures to combat illicit financing.

Meanwhile, MASAK has introduced new conditions in reporting of individuals’ non-commercial payments:

-Payments above 100,000 Turkish liras and below 1 million Turkish liras (or equivalent in FX) to offshore entities are required to be uploaded to MASAK’s data system on a daily basis

-Payments above 1 million Turkish liras (or equivalent in FX) to offshore entities are required to be shared with MASAK one day in advance

The TBB said these measures excluded corporate transactions and payments between financial institutions.

"With this reporting, MASAK aims to increase Turkey’s compliance with FATF guidance in order to prioritize and address key ML risks, particularly those related to fraud, and TF risks linked to COVID-19," it added.

The association asked MASAK and businesses to remain vigilant to emerging risks, "and ensure that they continue to effectively mitigate these risks and are able to detect and report suspicious activity."

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