The European Commission has proposed legislation to “ensure full traceability of transfers of crypto-assets such as Bitcoin” to prevent and expose “their possible use for money laundering or terrorist financing”. In addition, “anonymous crypto asset wallets are prohibited”.
New EU rules prohibit anonymous crypto transactions and wallets
The European Commission tabled a series of legislative proposals on Tuesday aimed at strengthening EU anti-money laundering and terrorist financing (AML / CFT) rules. Proposals include a revision of the 2015 Fund Transfers Regulation “to track transfers of crypto assets”.
The proposals take into account “new and emerging challenges related to technological innovation”, including “virtual currencies, more integrated financial flows in the internal market and the global nature of terrorist organizations”, stated the Commission.
The core of the proposed legislative package is the creation of a new “Anti-Money Laundering Authority (AMLA) at EU level”. It will be “the central authority coordinating national authorities to ensure that the private sector applies EU rules correctly and consistently”.
The proposals also include “the full application of the EU AML / CFT rules to the crypto sector”. The Commission stated that currently only certain categories of crypto service providers fall within the scope of the EU money / CFT rules. The proposals extend the rules to the entire sector and oblige “all service providers to exercise due diligence towards their customers”. The European Commission described:
Today’s changes will ensure full traceability of transfers of crypto-assets such as Bitcoin, and enable the prevention and detection of their possible use for money laundering or terrorist financing.
The announcement adds that in applying the full EU AML / CFT rules to the crypto sector:
Anonymous crypto asset wallets are banned.
The Commission found that “anonymous bank accounts are already banned under EU anti-money laundering and terrorist financing rules”.
The legislative package is now being discussed by the European Parliament and the Council. “The future AML authority should start its work in 2024 and start working a little later with the work of direct supervision as soon as the directive has been implemented and the new legal framework is applicable,” concluded the European Commission.
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