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Ethiopia Drafting Money Laundering Law

Ethiopia is to replace the Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing Proclamation in effect for the last three years with a new draft legislation presented to the House of Representatives this week.

The new law is designed to enact mechanism more severe than the ones in place at this time to control financial institutions as well as non-financial businesses and professionals such as lawyers and accountants.

The draft law requires financial institutions as other non designated bodies to identify a clients potential connection to criminal activities as part of the effort to combat money laundering and financing of terrorism.

The new law will oblige financial institutions to contact the government bodies when they encounter or reasonably suspect money laundering or financial terrorism including in attempted transactions.

Financial organizations who fail to meet the obligations will be fined an amount of not less than 10 thousand birr or the disbarment from employment in the sector for individuals found guilty of gross violations.

Another element of the law is the stipulation that mandates financial institutions and other designated bodies to enact appropriate risk management systems to determine the source of funds managed by politically influential people and or any person with close family ties to such a person.

Source: The Reporter