Belgium

New Documents

The Bank for International Settlements’ Innovation Hub published its work program for the 2021-22 fiscal year, highlighting central bank digital currencies, cybersecurity, and other areas of focus.

The United Kingdom’s Prudential Regulation Authority published Policy Statement 1/21 to make minor consequential amendments to the Notification Form and other updates to Senior Managers and Certification Regime Form L.

News

Enforcement Actions

Luxembourg’s Commission de Surveillance du Secteur Financier issued a €45,000 fine against the Grevenmacher, Luxembourg-based investment fund manager after an on-site inspection identified isolated anti-money laundering and counterterrorist financing compliance failures.

The U.S. Justice Department entered into a deferred prosecution agreement with the Indonesia-based global supplier of cigarette paper products to resolve charges that the company conspired to commit bank fraud in connection with the shipment of products to North Korean customers.


Key Documents

Important Facts

  • The U.S. State Department labels Belgium as a major money laundering jurisdiction. The majority of the criminal proceeds laundered in Belgium are derived from foreign criminal activity heavily associated with the recent boom in cocaine importations at the Port of Antwerp. Bulk cash smugglers, the principal money laundering concerns of law enforcement, move European drug proceeds out of the region. Trade in illicit goods through the Port fuels a shadow economy and facilitates the movement of laundered drug money from Belgium back to South America or through intermediary points such as Dubai or Hong Kong. Belgian-based criminal organizations that traffic cocaine within the region use the Belgian banking system, in conjunction with a complex network of shell companies, to integrate the illicit funds into Belgian bank accounts. Also, legitimate businesses, such as real estate, restaurants, diamonds and retail businesses are used to launder drug proceeds. Diamonds are specifically vulnerable to money laundering given their high value and ease of transport. The State Department notes that virtual currencies are increasingly being used in Belgium by criminal networks. To combat money laundering, Belgium has comprehensive know your customer rules and suspicious transaction report requirements
Source: 2020 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report (INCSR)

Rankings

FATF i | 2013 methodology

Technical Effectiveness
Compliant : 21 High : 0
Largely Compliant : 16 Substantial : 4
Partially Compliant : 3 Moderate : 7
Non-Compliant : 0 Low : 0

Belgium's technical compliance was re-rated in a Sept. 3, 2018 follow-up report

BASEL i

Rank : 118/141
Score : 3.98/10

TRANSPARENCY INTERNATIONAL i

Rank : 17/180
Score : 75/100

Tax Justice Network i

Rank : 50/133
Score : 45/100