Response to consultation on draft Guidelines on the role, tasks and responsibilities AML/CFT compliance officers

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1. Do you have any comments on the section ‘Subject matter, scope and definitions’?

In first instance we wish to express our support for the EBA´s approach to draft a new set of consultations on new Guidelines on the role of AML/CFT compliance officers. Given the crucial relevance of these kind of governance issues, the simple update of general internal governance guidelines is not sufficient. Once the subject matter and the scope are properly clarified, the provision of special definitions on AML/CFT compliance allows the full implementation by financial sector operators. The distinction between Management body in its supervisory function and Management body in its management function is the foundation of a sound and robust compliance.

2. Do you have any comments on Guideline 4.1 ‘Role and responsibilities of the management body in the AML/CFT framework and of the senior manager responsible for AML/CFT’?

We do share the approach taken by EBA on this matter by placing, in first position, knowledge, skills, and experience of the management body. The profound understanding of business models, the risk involved, and specific regulations are key elements in developing the supervisory function of the management body. This knowledge and competence must be evaluated and certified by an independent third party prior to the assumption by any management function. This external and independent control provides a safe harbour to financial sector operators and facilitates the review of competent authorities. On this issue, the EBA could use as a model, ESMA´s guidelines for the assessment of knowledge and competence.

3. Do you have any comments on Guideline 4.2 ‘Role and responsibilities of the AML/CFT compliance officer’?

First of all, we consider a major step to be the designation of a specific compliance officer for AML/CFT. This specific compliance officer will be the main contact point for purposes of internal control and supervisory relations.
We also support the requirements of knowledge and competence for this position. Being expressly understood, that this knowledge and competence must be evaluated by an independent third party.

4. Do you have any comments on Guideline 4.3 ‘Organisation of the AML/CFT compliance function at group level’?

We do agree on the proposals on Organization of the AML/CFT compliance function at group level, under the proportionality principle. These EBA proposals must be flexible enough to allow self-management under the comply-or-explain corporate governance principle.

5. Do you have any comments on Guideline 4.4 ‘Review of the AML/CFT compliance function by competent authorities’?

The review of the competent authorities must be undertaken through digital tools. To achieve effective checks and balances on AML/CFT compliance it is necessary to apply SupTech procedures. We suggest a pilot regime and sandbox spaces to develop interoperability between financial operators and supervisors.

Name of the organization

FECIF - The European Federation of Financial Advisers and Financial Intermediaries