Awareness Session on Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism for the Lawyers in Employment Sector (Session 1) - May 15,2024

  • Awareness Programme
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An awareness session on “Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT)”, was successfully conducted for the lawyers in employment sector. The session was jointly organized by the Association of Corporate Lawyers Sri Lanka and the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), at the Centre for Banking Studies (CBS) in Rajagiriya on May 15, 2024. Approximately 80 lawyers representing government and private institutions participated in the programme.

Introduction to AML/CFT, the role of Corporate Lawyers in AML/CFT and introduction to FIU and the role of the FIU in working towards AML/CFT requirements and Mutual Evaluation process were among the topics discussed.

Hon. Justice (Rtd.) Buwaneka Aluwihare, Chairman of the Cabinet appointed AML/CFT Task Force, Mr. Rajeewa Amarasuriya, Attorney at Law and Governing Board Member of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka and Dr. (Mrs.) Subhani Keerthiratne, Director of FIU, addressed the session as resource persons. A Q & A session was conducted at the end of the session.

Awareness Programme on Managing Financial Crime Risks in the Financial Services Sector of Sri Lanka (Programme 09) - April 30, 2024

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The ninth awareness programme on “Managing Financial Crime Risks in the Financial Services Sector of Sri Lanka”, jointly organized by the Association of Compliance Officers of Banks (ACOB) and the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), was successfully conducted for the officers of financial institutions (FIs) at the Centre for Banking Studies (CBS) in Rajagiriya on April 30, 2024. Approximately 100 participants representing Licensed Commercial Banks, Licensed Specialized Banks, Licensed Finance Companies and Money or Value Transfer Service Providers participated in the programme.

The role of the Compliance Officers in preparation for Mutual Evaluation 2025,red alerts on Trade Based Money Laundering, importance of regulating and supervising the private sector institutions under AML/CFT requirements and evaluation process of Immediate Outcome 3, were among the topics discussed at the programme.

Dr. Subhani Keerthiratne, Director of FIU, Mr. G. P. Gnanaraj, Senior Director (retired) of Sri Lanka Customs and Dr. Gordon Hook, International AML/CFT Consultant and former Executive Secretary of the Asia Pacific Group, addressed the sessions as resource persons.

Notice to General Public: Participating in Pyramid Schemes is a Punishable Offence - April 23, 2024

  • Pyramid Schemes
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The Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) has determined that eight (8) entities conduct and/or have conducted prohibited schemes, in addition to the entities /applications published by CBSL on August 24, 2023.

Any person who directly or indirectly initiates, offers, promotes, advertises, conduct, finances, manages or directs a prohibited type pyramid schemes shall be guilty of a punishable offence.

Awareness Programme for the Law Enforcement Officers of Sri Lanka Police to facilitate investigations related to “Trade Based Money Laundering and Tax Related Crimes” - March 25, 2024

  • ADB Workshop
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The FIU conducted an awareness programme on “Trade Based Money Laundering and Tax Related Crimes” for the law enforcement officers of Sri Lanka Police on 25th March 2024 from 9.00 am to 12.30 pm at the Centre for Banking Studies (CBS), Rajagiriya. The key objective of the session was to facilitate investigations carried out by law enforcement officers in relation to “Trade Based Money Laundering and Tax Related Crimes”.

Dr. Subhani Keerthiratne, Director of the FIU delivered the opening remarks of the session which was followed by a noteworthy keynote address by Hon. Justice Buwaneka Aluwihare, P.C., Retired Justice of the Supreme Court who is the Chairman of the “Task Force on Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism”.

Further, two sessions on “Trade Based Money Laundering” and “Tax Related Crimes” were conducted by Mr. G B Gnanaraj, Senior Director of Customs (Retired) and Mr. D R S [Limited Sharing] Hapuarachchi, Commissioner General (Retired) of the Department of Inland Revenue, respectively.

The session was attended by 110 officers from different divisions of the Criminal Investigation Department and Colombo Crimes Division of Sri Lanka Police whereas Deputy Inspector General of Police, Mr. P Ampawila and Senior Superintendent of Police, Mrs. H W Imesha Muthumala also attended the workshop.

In concluding the programme, Dr. Subhani Keerthiratne, Director, Dr. Ayesh Ariyasinghe, Additional Director, Ms. Wangeesha Karunarathna, Deputy Director and Mr. Chandima Bandara, Senior Assistant Director of the FIU participated in the discussion and provided feasible solutions to the concerns raised by the participants.

AML/CFT Familiarization Programme for Restricted Dealers in Sri Lanka - March 21, 2024

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An Anti-Money Laundering/Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) Familiarization Programme for Restricted Dealers in Sri Lanka was conducted successfully for the second time by the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) at the Central Bank of Sri Lanka on March 21, 2024. The primary objective of this programme was to raise awareness among Compliance Officers of Restricted Dealers (RD) and enhance their capacity on AML/CFT compliance matters.

With 53 participants representing 50 restricted dealer institutions, it underscores the widespread interest and collective effort within the sector to address AML/CFT concerns and strengthen compliance measures.

The programme was inaugurated with the welcome remarks by Dr. Subhani Keerthiratne, Director, Financial Intelligence Unit.

Mrs. S.M.H Rangika Head of Supervision Division and Mrs. A.D Premathilaka, Senior Assistant Director of Financial Intelligence Unit conducted the sessions as resource persons. Ms. I A W H Karunaratne, Deputy Director of the Financial Intelligence Unit, actively engaged with participants, providing valuable insights and addressing their queries during the session.

Concluding remarks were delivered by, Dr. Ayesh Ariyasinghe, Additional Director of the Financial Intelligence Unit.

Knowledge Sharing Session with the officials of Banking Institutions on “Implementation of Red Flag Indicators on Trade Based Money Laundering” - February 20, 2024

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A successful knowledge sharing session with the representatives of 12 leading Licensed Banks, on “Implementation of Red Flag Indicators on Trade Based Money Laundering”, was conducted on February 20, 2024, at the Central Bank of Sri Lanka. This session was organized by the Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka with the main objective of emphasizing the importance of identifying and reporting suspicious transactions relating to international trade transactions which could possibly be related to trade-based money laundering.

Dr. (Mrs.) Subhani Keerthiratne, Director, Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka (FIU) delivered the opening remarks of the meeting, highlighting the importance of identifying suspicious transactions relating to international trade and reporting, as Customs related offences have been identified as the third highest offence generating criminal proceeds, during the National Risk Assessment on Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing in 2021/22.

Mr. G B Gnanaraj, former Senior Director of Customs, delivered his experience on the topic “How to identify suspicious trade transactions which could be possible trade-based money laundering” during the session. He also addressed the questions raised by the participants.

The final segment of the session focused on obtaining feedback and suggestions from the participants on further improvements to be made in implementation of Red Flag Indicators on Trade Based Money Laundering. The participating officials agreed to submit their proposals through the Association of the Compliance Officers of Banks.

Workshop sponsored by the Asian Development Bank on Enterprise-wide ML/TF Risk Assessment for domestic banks - January and February, 2024

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A training programme on institutional-wide Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing (ML/TF) Risk Assessments was conducted to compliance staff of domestic banks in Sri Lanka. The Trade and Supply Chain Finance Programme of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in association of the Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka (FIU) undertook this initiative in January–February 2024.

Dr. Ramandeep Chhina, an ADB sponsored subject expert, conducted the workshop. The workshop comprised two main sessions; Online Workshop for Gap Analysis and On-site Workshop and Meetings.

At the Center for Banking Studies, Rajagiriya, 19 domestic banks participated in the Gap Analysis Workshops, On-Site Workshops, and Meetings, which were successfully held from January 10–16, 2024, and January 29–February 02, 2024, respectively. The banks which were clustered into three focus groups—small banks, medium banks, and large banks—according to their asset bases participated in the workshop. The sessions were arranged in the form of a focus-group discussion or semi-structured interviews with each group of banks. Each focus group consisted of three or four bank officials who are directly responsible for assessing the ML/TF risk at their respective institutions.

Advanced Cybercrime Investigation Course - January 22 - 26, 2024

  • ADB Workshop
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Officials of the Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka participated in the “Advanced Cybercrime Investigation Course” conducted by International Criminal Investigative Training Assistance Program, of the United States Department of Justice. The program was held during 22 to 26 January 2024 at Colombo, Sri Lanka. Investigators from the Sri Lanka Police, including officers from the Cybercrime Investigation Division and the Children & Women Bureau, also participated in the event.

This course was mainly focused on Cyber Crime Investigations & Forensics and advanced technologies of Cryptocurrency analysis. Furthermore, the course included case studies and practical sessions to enhance the investigative experience of the participants.

Notice to the Public: Protecting the Public from Crypto Investment Scams - January 16, 2024

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The alarming rise in fraudulent activities related to crypto investments is a major concern these days. It is crucial to be aware of the tactics used by fraudsters to safeguard your finances and stay vigilant.

Stay vigilant, stay informed, and protect your financial well-being. Report any suspicious activity promptly to the authorities. Your vigilance can make a difference in combating crypto investment scams.

Notice to the Public: Misuse of Personal Accounts for Illegal Activities - January 16, 2024

  • Misuse of Personal Accounts for Illegal Activities

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The Financial Intelligence Unit advises the public invloved in businesses to maintain seperate bank accounts for personal and business purposes.

Mixing personal and business funds may raise suspicions of money laundering, a serious crime that can result in criminal charges and investigations.

Notice to the Customers of Designated Non-Finance Businesses and Professions - January 15, 2024

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) urges the customers of Designated Non-Finance Businesses and Professions (DNFBPs) to support the DNFBPs in adhering to the legal requirements to protect the country from the risk of financial crimes.

It is the responsibility of the customer to provide the information requested by DNFBPs and cooperate with them in order to facilitate smooth and efficient services which are well protected from possible financial crimes.try from the risk of financial crimes.

Notice to the Customers of Financial Institutions - January 15, 2024

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session

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The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) urges the customers of Financial Institutions (FIs), to support the FIs in adhering to the legal requirements to protect the country from the risk of financial crimes.

It is the responsibility of the customer to provide the information requested by the FIs and cooperate with them in order to facilitate smooth and efficient services which are well protected from possible financial crimes.

CBSL Initiates Robust Reforms in Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing Framework - Daily FT (January, 2024)

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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The Central Bank announced yesterday that the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) is in the process of introducing amendments to three key pieces of legislation concerning money-laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT).

The legislation in focus includes the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, No. 5 of 2006 (PMLA), Financial Transactions Reporting Act, No. No 6 of 2006 (FTRA), and Conevntion on the Surpression of Terrorist Financing Act, No. 25 of 2005 (CSTFA).

"These amendments aim to strengthen the legal framework, aligning it with internation standards. The amendments are anticipated to be enacted in 2024," Central Bank Governor Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe said outlining the 'Annual Policy Statement' yesterday.

As a part of these changes, the AML/CFT National Coordinating Committee will also be formalised within the statutory provisions through an amendment to FTRA.

"Responding to a request from the FIU, the Sri Lanka Police has established a specialised unit dedicated to investigationg diverse scams, prohibited pyramid schemes and unauthorised deposit-taking activities. The FIU remains vigilant in identifying various unlawful activities and alerting relevant authorities," he added.

Sri Lanka is gearing up for its third mutual evaluation on the AML/CFT framework, scheduled to commence in March 2025. Coordinated by the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG), this evaluation aims to assess the country's measures against money laundering and terrorist financing. Sri Lanka's compliance with the 40 reccommendations of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and the effectiveness of its AML/CFT framework under the FATF 11 immediate outcomes will be scrutinised.

Following the recent conclusion of the 2021/22 National Risk Assessment on Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing, gaps and deficiencies in Sri Lanka's AML/CFT framework have been identified. The cabinet ministers have approved institution-wise action plans to rectify these gaps and these plans are communicated to respective stakeholders for effective implementation. An AML/CFT task force will be established this month, with the FIU serving as the secretariat of this task force.

In addition, steps will be taken to establish an inter-regulatory body under the AML/CFT National Coordinating Committee to enhance collaboration and information sharing among various regulatory authorities, focusing on AML/CFT measures.

Meanwhile, the FIU aims to initiate strategic analysis through the 'goAML' online reporting and analysing system, with efforts to enhance the coverage of reporting institutions. To further strengthen the compliance of reporting entities, with the legal and regulatory framework relating to AML/CFT, on-site examinations/off-site reviews of Financial Institutions and Designated Non-Finance Businesses and Professions (DNFBPs) are to be conducted with a risk based approach.

Awareness session for the Competent Authority of Sri Lanka - December 20, 2023

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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The Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka (FIU), in collaboration with the Ministry of Defence, successfully conducted the second awareness session for the Competent Authority (represented by the Chief of National Intelligence on behalf of the Secretary of Defence) and various Intelligence Agencies on December 20, 2023.

Held at the Center for Banking Studies (CBS) in Rajagiriya, this interactive session saw the participation of 70 intelligence officials actively involved in the process, along with representatives from key stakeholders. The primary objective of the session was to enhance the precision of domestic designations through effective information exchange with the Department of Registration of Persons (DRP) and the Department of Immigration and Emigration (DIE). Additionally, it aimed to strengthen the coverage of domestic assets under UNSCR TFS provisions by leveraging internal asset freezing mechanisms within the Department of Motor Traffic (DMT) and the Registrar General’s Department (RGD).

The session was conducted by Mr. Kosala Harshadewa, Senior Assistant Director of the FIU. Officials from the DRP, DIE, DMT, and RGD presented insightful explanations of their respective processes. The program also included a dedicated segment for discussing practical challenges encountered by intelligence agencies in the domestic designation process. Senior officials from the Attorney General’s Department and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs contributed valuable insights to address these challenges.

Awareness session on “Registration of Express Trusts and Related Matters” - December 15, 2023

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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An awareness session on “Registration of Express Trusts and Related Matters” was conducted successfully by the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) in collaboration with the Registrar General’s Department on December 15, 2023, at Center for Banking Studies Rajagiriya. The primary objective of this session was to raise awareness among Land Registrars on registration of Express Trust operates in respective localities. The session was attended by more than 55 Lander Registrars, Assistant Land Registrars covering all regions of Sri Lanka.

The session was inaugurated with the welcome remarks by Dr. Ayesh Ariyasinghe, Additional Director, Financial Intelligence Unit. The topics discussed during the session by Dr. Ayesh Ariyasinghe, Additional Director of FIU and Ms. Wangeesha Karunarathna, Deputy Director of FIU included Outcome of the ML/TF National Risk Assessment 2021/2022, FATF Recommendation 25 on Beneficial Ownership of Legal Persons and Arrangements and Sri Lanka’s Legal Framework relating to Express Trusts and way forward.

The session also consisted with a discussion on way forward relating to some of the practical difficulties faced by Land Registrars in registration of express trusts and the action that can be taken against nonregistration. Concluding remark was delivered by the Mrs. Chandani Jagodaarachchi, Senior Deputy Registrar General of Registrar General’s Department.

Presentation for National Financial Inclusion Strategy Management Committee on Sri Lanka’s Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing National Risk Assessment 2021/2022 and Financial Inclusion Product Risk Assessment - December 14, 2023

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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Aimed at ensuring awareness on recently released National Risk Assessment (NRA) on money laundering and terrorist financing (ML/TF) with emphasis on results of Financial Inclusion Product Risk Assessment, Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) made a presentation on Sri Lanka’s Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing National Risk Assessment 2021/2022 and Financial Inclusion Product Risk Assessment (FIPRA) on December 14, 2023, at the Management Committee (MC) Meeting of National Financial Inclusion Strategy (NFIS) held at the Central Bank Head Office.

Mrs. Theja Pathberiya, Deputy Director of FIU and Ms. Sajini Chandrasekara, Assistant Director of FIU represented the FIU at the meeting as working committee members of NFIS. Ms. Sajini Chandrasekara made the presentation at the MC meeting focusing on promoting awareness on most significant threats related to ML/TF as highlighted in NRA, country’s obligations to implement a robust AML/CFT system, Financial Inclusion Product Risk Assessment and gaps and recommendations arising from the FIPRA. Ms. Chandrasekara elucidated FIU’s commitment to achieve the NFIS action plan as a key stakeholder in the Digital Finance & Payments cluster of the NFIS and conducting NRA as one of the major action items in FIU’s shared objectives under NFIS as well.

Cooperation on Cybercrime and Electronic Evidence: OCTOPUS Conference - December 13 - 15, 2023

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of Sri Lanka was a prominent participant in the 'Octopus Conference', which took place in Bucharest, Romania, from December 13 to 15, 2023. This conference, organized every 12 to 18 months by the Council of Europe, serves as a significant global platform for exchanging insights on cybercrime. It attracts a diverse assembly of experts from over 100 countries, including representatives from international organizations, the private sector, and academic institutions.

The Sri Lankan delegation, headed by the Secretary to the Ministry of Justice, comprised Senior Officials from the FIU Sri Lanka, Ministry of Justice, Attorney General’s Department, and the Sri Lanka Computer Emergency Readiness Team (CERT).

The FIU Sri Lanka made a presentation focused on a notable case study involving the successful use of blockchain analysis to uncover an illegal cryptocurrency operation within Sri Lanka. The FIU Sri Lanka plays a vital role as the national coordinator for the Council of Europe's 'GLACY-e' (Global Action on Cyber Crimes – enhanced) project. In this project coordination, the FIU Sri Lanka collaborates closely with Sri Lanka CERT and has the distinction of being the sole Financial Intelligence Unit serving as a country coordinator.

FATF Mutual Evaluation - India's Best Practices

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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High-Level Awareness Session for Board of Directors and Senior Management of Licensed Banks, Licensed Finance Companies, Insurance Companies, Stock-Brokers, Mobile/Money or Value Transfer Service Providers and Primary Dealers of Sri Lanka, was held on November 30, 2023 at the John Exter International Conference Hall of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka.

Mr. Jairam Manglani, Head, Financial Crime Compliance, Standard Chartered Bank - India & South Asia and Mr. Nitin Shinde, Director – Compliance, South Asia, Western Union Services India Private Limited conducted the sessions as resource persons.

The recording of the awareness session is available for download on the 'Homepage' of the goAML Website.

AML/CFT Familiarization Programme for Restricted Dealers in Sri Lanka - December 12, 2023

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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The AML/CFT Familiarization Programme for Restricted Dealers in Sri Lanka was conducted successfully by the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) in collaboration with the sector regulator, Department of Foreign Exchange (DFE) at the Central Bank of Sri Lanka. The primary objective of this program was to raise awareness among Compliance Officers of Restricted Dealers (RD) and enhance their capacity on Anti-Money Laundering/Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) matters.

The program was inaugurated with the welcome remarks by Dr. Ayesh Ariyasinghe, Additional Director, Financial Intelligence Unit. The session was then addressed by Dr. B.H.P.K Thilakaweera, Director, Department of Foreign Exchange.

Topics discussed during the session included Foreign Exchange Compliance Obligations and AML/CFT Compliance Obligations for Restricted Dealers.

Ms. Menusha Randeniya, Senior Assistant Director, Department of Foreign Exchange and Ms. S.M.H Rangika, Senior Assistant Director, Financial Intelligence Unit conducted the sessions as resource persons. Concluding remarks was delivered by Mrs. Theja Pathberiya, Deputy Director of Financial Intelligence Unit.

Awareness Session on Managing Financial Crimes Risk in the Financial Services Sector in Sri Lanka (Programme 08) - December 08, 2023

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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The eighth awareness programme on “Managing Financial Crime Risks in the Financial Services Sector of Sri Lanka” was conducted successfully for Financial Institutions (FIs) jointly by the Association of Compliance Officers of Banks (ACOB) and the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), via Zoom platform on December 08, 2023. Around 100 participants representing Licensed Banks, Licensed Finance Companies and Money or Value Transfer Service Providers participated in the programme.

The program was inaugurated with the welcome remarks by Mrs. Enoka Mohotty, Director, Financial Intelligence Unit. She emphasized the crucial role of the Compliance Officer in safeguarding the integrity of the financial system and underscored the importance of maintaining vigilance regarding the potential misuse of financial institutions as a means for unlawfully acquired proceeds from bribery and corruption.

The topics discussed during the session included financial crime risks associated with digital currencies, environment social and governance risk and best practices in bribery and corruption controls.

Awareness Session on Managing Financial Crimes Risk in the Financial Services Sector in Sri Lanka (Programme 07) - December 01, 2023

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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The seventh awareness programme on “Managing Financial Crime Risks in the Financial Services Sector of Sri Lanka” was conducted successfully for Financial Institutions (FIs) jointly by the Association of Compliance Officers of Banks (ACOB) and the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) at the Centre for Banking Studies (CBS), Rajagiriya on December 01, 2023. Around 80 participants representing Licensed Banks, Licensed Finance Companies and Money or Value Transfer Service Providers participated in the programme.

The topics discussed during the session included drug related investigations, fraud risk typologies, introduction to financial statement misrepresentation – implications and red flags and case studies.

The first session was conducted by Mr. R M N P Ranaweera, Inspector of Police, Police Narcotic Bureau, and the resource person of the second session, Mr. Levent Kutluca, Managing Director, Head of Fraud Risk, Asia Pacific (HSBC Hong Kong) joined via Zoom platform and conducted the session. Accordingly, more participants representing Financial Institutions joined the second session via Zoom.

Awareness Session on Managing Financial Crimes Risk in the Financial Services Sector in Sri Lanka (Programme 06) - November 30, 2023

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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The sixth awareness programme on “Managing Financial Crime Risks in the Financial Services Sector of Sri Lanka” was conducted successfully for Financial Institutions (FIs) jointly by the Association of Compliance Officers of Banks (ACOB) and the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) at the John Exter International Conference Hall, Central Bank of Sri Lanka, Colombo 01 on November 30, 2023. Around 110 participants representing Licensed Banks, Licensed Finance Companies and Money or Value Transfer Service Providers participated in the programme.

The program was inaugurated with the welcome remarks by Mrs. K M A N Daulagala, Deputy Governor of Central Bank of Sri Lanka.

The objective of the program was to deliberate on the experiences and best practices gained during the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) Mutual Evaluation of India's Banking Sector and Money Value Transfer Services (MVTS) Sector.

Mr. Jairam Manglani, Head, Financial Crime Compliance, Standard Chartered Bank - India & South Asia and Mr. Nitin Shinde, Director – Compliance, South Asia, Western Union Services India Private Limited conducted the sessions as resource persons.

Concluding remarks was delivered by Mrs. T M J Y P Fernando, Senior Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka.

Awareness Session on Managing Financial Crimes Risk in the Financial Services Sector in Sri Lanka (Programme 05) - November 24, 2023

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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The fifth awareness programme of a series of awareness programmes on “Managing Financial Crime Risks in the Financial Services Sector of Sri Lanka” for Financial Institutions (FIs) was held successfully at the Centre for Banking Studies (CBS), Rajagiriya on November 24, 2023 from 9.00 a.m. to 4.15 p.m. This series of awareness programmes is organized by the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) in collaboration with the Association of Compliance Officers of Banks (ACOB). The workshop was conducted in a hybrid format where over 100 participants representing Licensed Banks, Licensed Finance Companies and Money or Value Transfer Service Providers has participated.

The session was conducted by Mr. Amaury Dirckx, Senior Investigation Manager, Asia Pacific (HSBC – Hong Kong). Further, he spent seven years in HSBC’s Financial Crime department, covering the Bank’s Asia Pacific markets. With a background in East and Southeast Asian geopolitics, history, and international relations, Amaury has developed SMEs in various Financial Crime fields, including drug trafficking, bribery and corruption, and large money laundering networks. Amaury currently holds a role of senior investigator with HSBC’s Complex Investigations team, with a specific focus on the proactive identification of money laundering networks.”

The topics with regard to best practices sharing on conducting Financial Crimes Investigations discussed during the session included introduction to financial crime investigations, introduction to large scale Money laundering networks, introduction to conducting a complex investigation, conducting transaction reviews and counterparty analysis, conducting network analysis and conducting portfolio level reviews. The session with case studies and group work encouraged active participation, making it an immense learning experience for all participants.

Awareness Session on Managing Financial Crimes Risk in the Financial Services Sector in Sri Lanka (Programme 04) - November 23, 2023

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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The fourth awareness programme on “Managing Financial Crime Risks in the Financial Services Sector of Sri Lanka” was conducted successfully for Financial Institutions (FIs) jointly by the Association of Compliance Officers of Banks (ACOB) and the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) at the Centre for Banking Studies (CBS), Rajagiriya on November 23, 2023. Around 90 participants representing Licensed Banks, Licensed Finance Companies and Money or Value Transfer Service Providers participated in the programme.

The session was conducted by Mr. Ankit Tibrewala, Director Sanctions Advisory, Financial Crime Compliance from Standard Chartered Bank India. Mr. Ankit Tibrewala is a Compliance professional with over 14 years of experience in the banking industry. He is a member of Institute of Chartered Accountants of India and is also ACAMS certified. His experience over the years includes managing compliance for Private banking and investment advisory related activities as well as third party products, before transitioning to sanctions compliance.

Awareness Session on Managing Financial Crimes Risk in the Financial Services Sector in Sri Lanka (Programme 03) - November 10, 2023

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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The third awareness programme on “Managing Financial Crime Risks in the Financial Services Sector of Sri Lanka” was conducted successfully for Financial Institutions (FIs) jointly by the Association of Compliance Officers of Banks (ACOB) and the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) at the Centre for Banking Studies (CBS), Rajagiriya on November 10, 2023. Around 90 participants representing Licensed Banks, Licensed Finance Companies and Money or Value Transfer Service Providers participated in the programme.

The main objective of the session was to enhance knowledge of the sector with regard to Financial Scams in Sri Lanka, Human Trafficking, Sex Trafficking, Debt Bondage and Child Sex Exploitation.

Mr. Matthew Friedman, Founder & Chief Executive Officer of Mekong Club, Mr. Thivanka Dassanayake, Sub Inspector of Illegal Assets Investigation Division and Mr. Dilan Siriwardana, Senior Assistant Director of FIU conducted the sessions as resource persons.

Introduction to Life Assurance for the Staff of the Financial Intelligence Unit - November 09, 2023

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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A knowledge-sharing session on life insurance was conducted by the representatives of the Insurance Sub-committee of the International Chamber of Commerce Sri Lanka at the Insurance Regulatory Commission of Sri Lanka (IRCSL). Dr. Subhani Keerthiratne, Additional Director of the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), and the AML/CFT Supervision Team of the FIU attended the session. Key officials of the IRCSL also actively participated in the session.

The main objective of the session was to enhance the knowledge of the FIU staff on life insurance sector and products. The session was very informative as it provided a platform for the FIU officers to clarify on transaction related to insurance products and services.

Mr. Devaan Cooray, Director - Ceylinco Insurance PLC was the main resource person for the day. The expert panel for the discussion included Mr. Dayarathna Perera – Sri Lanka Insurance Corporation Limited, Mr. Pranama Perera – Softlogic Life Insurance PLC and Mr. Mahendra Wilegoda – HNB Assurance PLC.

25th APG - Focused FATF Standards Training Course (STC) - November 06 - 10, 2023

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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The Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka participated in the “25th APG - focused FATF Standards Training Course”, hosted by the FATF Training Institute in collaboration with the APG Secretariat and the Bank Negara Malaysia. The programme was held during November 06-10, 2023 at the Lanai Kijang Training Centre, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

The programme was designed with the objectives of enhancing global compliance and improving assessment processes.

With a participation of 42 professionals from 24 different countries, the porogramme brought together a diverse group consist of prosecutors, officials from Financial Intelligence Units, tax authorities, and Law Enforcement Authorities. Further, the active participation of professionals from various backgrounds enriched the learning environment, fostering collaboration and knowledge-sharing.

South Asia Regional Anti - Corruption Workshop - November 05 - 09, 2023

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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The Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka participated in the “South Asia Regional Anti-Corruption Workshop ", hosted by the United States Department of Justice Office of Overseas Prosecutorial Development, Assistance and Training (OPDAT) in collaboration with the Internal Revenue Services (IRS).

The program was held during the period November 05-09, 2023, at the Westin Dhaka, Bangladesh. The attendees included representatives from various Sri Lankan government organizations engaged in AML/CFT analysis and investigations including Financial Intelligence Unit - Sri Lanka, Attorney General's Department, Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption, and Sri Lanka Police. Similarly, there were delegates from Maldives, Bangladesh, Nepal and India representing organizations such as Financial Intelligence Units, Attorney General’s Offices, Anti-Corruption Commissions and Police Services.

The program was aimed at providing knowledge on elements/stages of money laundering, beneficial ownership, collecting, and analyzing financial records, interviewing techniques, and net worth theory. Furthermore, the workshop included case studies and practical sessions to enhance the investigative experience of the participants. The program also provided a valuable opportunity to foster relationships and coordination among the stakeholders and to build a stronger network to ensure preventive measures against bribery and corruption.

Awareness Session on Effective Implementation of UNSCR Targeted Financial Sanctions (TFS) for the Competent Authority and Intelligence Agencies - November 02, 2023

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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The Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka (FIU) in collaboration with the Ministry of Defence conduced an awareness session for the Competent Authority (Chief of National Intelligence on behalf of the Secretary of Defence) and Intelligence Agencies on November 02, 2023, on effective implementation of TFS provisions in relevant UNSCRs. This interactive session was held at the Ministry of Defence with the participation of 70 officials who are directly involved in the process, and it aimed to enhance the awareness of them on the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) of TFS implementation.

Major General J R Kulatunga RSP, ndc, psc, the Chief of National Intelligence delivered the opening remarks for the session. Mr. Kosala Harshadewa, Senior Assistant Director of the FIU and Ms. Sanjika Kammanankada, Assistant Legal Advisor of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs shared their knowledge and expertise on the subject.

Awareness Session on Managing Financial Crimes Risk in the Financial Services Sector in Sri Lanka (Programme 02) - October 27, 2023

  • Financial Crimes Risk Awareness Session
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The second awareness programme on “Managing Financial Crime Risks in the Financial Services Sector of Sri Lanka” was conducted successfully for Financial Institutions (FIs) jointly by the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) and the Association of Compliance Officers of Banks (ACOB) the Centre for Banking Studies (CBS), Rajagiriya on October 27, 2023. Over 100 participants representing Licensed Banks, Licensed Finance Companies and Money or Value Transfer Service Providers participated in the programme.

The main objective of the session was to enhance knowledge of the sector with regard to personal identification data and security features of the National Identity Card, the role of the Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs) and Financial Institutions in managing financial crime risks, human trafficking/smuggling and Cybercrime.

Mr. Pradeep Saputhanthri, Commissioner General, Department of Registration of Persons, DIG Dhammika Priyantha, Logistics Range, CI N Yogaeshweran, Human Trafficking, Smuggling and Maritime Crime Investigation Division of Criminal Investigation Department and CI Sampath Senarathna, Criminal Investigation Department representing Sri Lanka Police conducted sessions as resource persons.

Public Seminar - New Anti-Corruption Bill : Gather to Build a Country Free of Corruption - October 26, 2023

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A Public Semianr on the 'New Anti - Corruption Bill', presented by President's Counsel Sarath Jayamanne, is to be held on October 26, 2023 from 3.30 PM to 5.30 PM at the Centre for Banking Studies (CBS) in Rajagiriya.

The general public is welcome to join the seminar physically by visiting the CBS or virtually through YouTube and Facebook using the below links.

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Awareness Session on Managing Financial Crimes Risk in the Financial Services Sector of Sri Lanka (Programme 1) - October 20, 2023

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The first awareness programme of a series of awareness programmes on “Managing Financial Crime Risks in the Financial Services Sector of Sri Lanka” for Financial Institutions (FIs) was held successfully at the Centre for Banking Studies (CBS), Rajagiriya on October 20, 2023 from 8.45 a.m. to 1.00 p.m. This series of awareness programmes is organized by the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) in collaboration with the Association of Compliance Officers of Banks (ACOB). The workshop was conducted in a hybrid format where over 250 participants representing Licensed Banks, Licensed Finance Companies and Money or Value Transfer Service Providers has participated in the programee in person and virtually, due to the high demand from the financial sector.

The programme was inaugurated with the opening remarks by Mrs. Enoka Mohotty, Director, FIU where she highlighted that this series of programmes is aimed to enhance the knowledge and skills of officers of FIs necessary to comply with AML/CFT requirements and apply them uniformly to fulfill such requirements focusing the upcoming 3rd Mutual Evaluation of Sri Lanka by the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG). The welcome address was delivered by Mr. Sudarshana Jayasekera, Vice President of ACOB.

Dr. (Mrs.) Subhani Keerthiratne, Additional Director, Dr. Ayesh Ariyasinghe, Additional Director, Mr. Dilan Siriwardana, Senior Assistant Director and Mr. Supun Gunasekara, Assistant Director, representing FIU participated in the session as resource persons.

Awareness Session for the Intelligence Officers of the Military Forces of Sri Lanka in collaboration with the Sri Lanka Army Military Training School - October 17, 2023

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On the invitation from the Sri Lanka Army Military Training School (MITS), the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) has conducted an awareness session for the intelligence officers of the Military Forces of Sri Lanka on the topic of “Money Laundering (ML), Terrorist Financing (TF) and The Role of the FIU in combating ML and TF”. The awareness session was held with the aim of improving the knowledge of intelligence officers on the above subjects.

The awareness session was conducted on 17.10.2023 by Mr. Nimantha Athukorala, Senior Assistant Director of the FIU and Mr. Supun Gunasekara, Assistant Director of the FIU on the above topic which covered areas such as an overview of ML/TF/ Proliferation Financing (PF), global efforts to combat ML/TF/PF, Sri Lanka’s legal framework, Current Trends/ Future Threats and how FIU can facilitate law enforcement agencies/intelligence agencies to combat ML/TF.

The FIU extends its gratitude to the MITS for organizing this session and looking forward to work in collaboration with the MITS in order to enhance the knowledge of the intelligence officers of Sri Lanka Military Forces through similar awareness sessions in the future.

Important Notice to Attorneys at Law and Notaries Public - October 04, 2023

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The Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka (FIU) urges the Attorneys at Law and Nortaries Public to appoint Compliance Officers, as per the Section 33 of the Financial Transactions Reporting Act, No 06 of 2006 (FTRA).

Failure to conform to the requirements under the FTRA shall be liable to administrative penalties.

Workshop for Journalists on Sri Lanka's Money Laundering/Terrorism Financing (ML/TF) National Risk Assessment - October 03, 2023

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Aimed at ensuring awareness on recently released National Risk Assessment (NRA) on money laundering and terrorist financing (ML/TF) and enhanced preparedness in view of Sri Lanka’s upcoming Mutual Evaluation by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) conducted a full day in-person awareness programme for journalists on “Sri Lanka’s Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing National Risk Assessment 2021/2022 and Mutual Evaluation March 2025” on October 3, 2023, from 9.30 a.m. to 4.00 p.m. at Centre for Banking Studies, Rajagiriya. The workshop saw the active participation of 35 representatives from print and electronic media institutions.

The programme featured a number of presentations and discussions which focused on promoting awareness on most significant threats related to ML/TF as highlighted in NRA, Anti Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) mutual evaluation process and country’s obligations to implement a robust AML/CFT system. Key topics discussed included mutual evaluation of Sri Lanka in 2025 and the international requirements by Dr. Subhani Keerthiratne - Additional Director of FIU, ML/TF national risk assessment 2021/2022 by Dr. Ayesh Ariyasinghe - Additional Director of FIU, mutual evaluation process by Mrs. Theja Pathberiya - Deputy Director of FIU and financial scams by Mr. Dilan Siriwardana - Senior Assistant Director of FIU. .

ViCTOR (Virtual Assets Facilitated Financial CrimeTrace, Obstruct, and Recover) Kick-Off Meeting: A Formal Prelude to the Fight Against Cryptocurrency Related Financial Crime - Spetember 27 to 29, 2023

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The ViCTOR Kick-off Meeting, a pivotal capacity-building initiative aimed at combating financial crime mainly within the cryptocurrency space, took place from September 27 to 29, 2023, in Tokyo, Japan. This gathering brought together key stakeholders, including the Financial Intelligence Units (FIUs) and Law Enforcement Agencies from Southeast Asia and five countries in South Asia including Sri Lanka. The primary focus of the ViCTOR Kick-off meeting was to enhance the capabilities of professionals involved in investigating and prosecuting virtual currency-related crimes.

Sri Lanka was actively engaged in this event, with five officers participating in the program, representing both the Financial Intelligence Unit and the Sri Lanka Police. During the event, Sri Lanka had the opportunity to share its experiences and the progress made in virtual currency-related investigations in the country. This exchange of knowledge and best practices with peer countries was a valuable component of the event, contributing to the overall success of the Project ViCTOR.

The Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka extends its heartfelt gratitude to INTERPOL - Financial Crime and Anti-Corruption Centre for organizing this crucial event, and we are deeply appreciative of Japan for hosting the gathering. Additionally, we express our thanks to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan for their invaluable support in addressing these pressing issues of financial crime. With over 60 delegates and esteemed guest speakers, including representatives from KoFIU and District Court Bamberg, as well as esteemed partners from Iknaio, TRM Labs, and Uppsala Security, the kick-off meeting was an indisputable success, emphasizing the importance of collaborative efforts in the fight against financial crime in the crypto space.

FIU News on the Kauluwa Publication of Central Bank of Sri Lanka - July - Spetember, 2023


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The Central Bank of Sri Lanka released the 'Kauluwa' publication for the period from July to September 2023.

News on the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) included in the 'Kauluwa', consisted of news on the Annual Plenary of the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG) and the ensuing Technical Assistance and Training Forum held in Canada, and awareness sessions conducted by the FIU for the Real Estate Sector as well as the Gem and Jewellery Sector.

Awareness Programme on Prohibited Financial Schemes, Unauthorized Deposit-Taking Institutions, Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism, Counterfeit Notes and Financial Literacy - September 21 - 22, 2023

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Based on an invitation by Mr. Aruna Wijesiri, the Manager, Regional Office, Anuradhapura, Central Bank of Sri Lanka, the officials of the Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka (FIU),

 Mr. Dilan Siriwardana, Senior Assistant Director, Head of the Intelligence Analysis Division 1 & 2, FIU;
 Mr. Nimantha Athukorala, Senior Assistant Director, Head of the Legal & Policy Division, FIU; and
 Mr. Supun Gunasekara, Assistant Director, Intelligence Analysis Division 1, FIU

participated as resource persons in the awareness programs, which focused on augmenting the knowledge and understanding of Senior Police Officers concerning a spectrum of crucial financial aspects. The program concentrated on enlightening these officers about Prohibited Financial Schemes, Unauthorized Deposit-Taking Institutions, Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism, Counterfeit Notes, and the fundamental principles of Financial Literacy. The awareness programs were attended by the Senior Officers of Sri Lanka Police attached to North Central and North Western Provinces on September 21 and 22, 2023, in Wariyapola and Anuradhapura.

CBSL Underscores Importance of SL Committing to Anti-Money Laundering Measures - The Island Online (September 19, 2023)

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It is imperative that Sri Lanka adheres to the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering theFinancing of Terrorism Framework (AML/CFT). Towards this end it needs to prioritize certainmeasures for consistent implementation, the Central Bank of Sri Lanka said in a press release.

The release added: In response to an invitation from the Financial Intelligence Unit of SriLanka, a high-level delegation from the Asia Pacifi c Group on Money Laundering (APG) visitedSri Lanka to engage with local authorities and provide them with crucial insights regarding theupcoming mutual evaluation of Sri Lanka’s Anti-Money Laundering and Countering theFinancing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) Framework. The international delegation included:

Julien Brazeau: APG Co-Chair and Associate Assistant Deputy Minister of Canada’sDepartment of Finance in Ottawa within the Financial Sector Policy Branch.

Dr. Gordon Hook: Executive Secretary, APG
David Shannon: Director, Mutual Evaluations Quality & Consistency, APG

The APG is one of the main regional monitoring bodies of the Financial Action Task Force(FATF), committed to monitoring and guiding the member jurisdictions in effectiveimplementation of the international standards to combat money laundering (ML), terrorismfi nancing (TF), and proliferation fi nancing associated with weapons of mass destruction(PFWMD). Approximately 200 countries are affi liated with the nine regional bodies under theFATF’s purview. Sri Lanka is one of the 13 founding members of the APG, since 1997.

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Bribery and Corruption Biggest Criminal Money Spinner after Narcotics - The Sunday Times (September 17, 2023)

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Bribery and corruption are now the second most significant unlawful activity that generatescriminal proceeds in the country and has shot up three places from fifth position in 2014, revealsthe National Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Risk Assessment released this week bythe Central Bank’s Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU).

“Although the incidents reported (complaints) were high, the raids and investigationssubsequently carried out result in a much lower number of prosecutions,” the report states. “Dueto the absence of ML [money laundering] investigations, no ML cases are reported linked tobribery and corruption offences.”

The report observes that national data on these offences were scanty. “During the assessedperiod, apparent scenarios of grand bribery and corruption events are not adequately reflected inthe statistics of investigations carried out,” it observes.

The first and third most significant unlawful activities generating criminal proceeds are drugs andpsychotropic substance trafficking and Customs-related offences, respectively. The usage ofdrugs has now widened in Sri Lanka from heroin and cannabis to several new types of narcoticdrugs and psychotropic substances such as LSD, crystal meth (ice) and cocaine, the reportidentifies.

With regard to Customs, NRA (the national risk assessment) infers that trade-related activitiesduring the relevant period “would have generated around Rs. 14.5 billion in illegal proceeds”. Themisuse of trade-based instruments such as letters of credit and open account terms ininternational trade indicated “significant involvement of the banking sector”.

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Sri Lanka’s Overall ML/TF Risk Assessed as “Medium” - Daily FT (September 15, 2023)

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Financial Intelligence Unit releases Sanitised Report of Second National Risk Assessment on Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing.Sri Lanka’s overall Money Laundering/Terrorism Financing risk has been rated as “medium” as per the second national assessment done by the Financial Intelligence Unit.

The FIU of Sri Lanka yesterday released findings of the sanitized report of the 2021/22 National Risk Assessment (NRA) on Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (ML/TF), which was developed based on the assessment conducted by the FIU together with public and private sector stakeholders. This assessment was aimed at identifying the ML/TF risks in the country. The assessment highlights the most significant ML/TF threats, vulnerabilities, and risks faced by Sri Lanka.

The NRA identified Drug Trafficking, Bribery and Corruption, Customs related Offences including Laundering of Trade-Based Proceeds, as the most prevalent predicate offences, where ML threat was rated as medium high. Fraud, Robbery, Environmental and Natural Resource Crimes recorded as having a medium level of ML threat. Human Smuggling/Trafficking, Tax Offences, Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated Fishing related unlawful activities were assessed as having a medium low ML threat while lower ML threat was observed for Counterfeiting of Currency.

The overall ML/TF risk for the country was assessed as Medium.

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Sri Lanka’s Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing Risk Assessed as ‘Medium’: Financial Intelligence Unit - Daily Mirror Online (September 15, 2023)

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The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of Sri Lanka in its recent sanitised report of the 2021/22 National Risk Assessment (NRA) on Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (ML/TF) has assessed the overall risk for the country as medium. The report was developed based on the assessment conducted by the FIU of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) together with public and private sector stakeholders.

The assessment, which aimed at identifying the ML/TF risks in the country, highlights the most significant ML/TF threats, vulnerabilities, and risks faced by Sri Lanka. The NRA identified Drug Trafficking, Bribery and Corruption, Customs related Offences including Laundering of Trade-Based Proceeds, as the most prevalent predicate offences, where ML threat was rated as medium high. Fraud, Robbery, Environmental and Natural Resource Crimes recorded as having a medium level of ML threat. Human Smuggling/ Trafficking, Tax Offences, Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated Fishing related unlawful activities were assessed as having a medium low ML threat while lower ML threat was observed for Counterfeiting of Currency.

Based on the NRA, the National Policy on Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) of Sri Lanka and comprehensive action plans for each stakeholder were prepared to address the gaps identified to effectively combat ML/TF in the country. The NRA 2021/22 is the second of such Assessments on Sri Lanka’s AML/CFT framework since the first Assessment in 2014.

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FIU Releases Second National Risk Assessment Report on ML/TF - The Morning (September 15, 2023)

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The Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka (FIU) of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) recently published the sanitised report of the 2021/22 National Risk Assessment (NRA) on Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (ML/TF). The report was developed based on an assessment conducted by the FIU, together with public and private sector stakeholders. This assessment highlights the most significant ML/TF threats, vulnerabilities, and risks faced by Sri Lanka.

The NRA identified drug trafficking, bribery and corruption, and customs-related offences including laundering of trade-based proceeds as the most prevalent predicate offences where ML threat was rated as medium high. Fraud, robbery, and environmental and natural resource crimes were recorded as having a medium level of ML threat. Human smuggling/trafficking; tax offences; and illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing-related unlawful activities were assessed as having a medium low ML threat. Lower ML threat was observed for counterfeiting of currency.

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APG High Level Delegation Visits Sri Lanka - September 11, 2023

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An APG high-level delegation visited Colombo, Sri Lanka from 6 to 8 September 2023 to discuss Sri Lanka’s preparation for its next evaluation in the APG’s fourth round, commencing in 2025. At the start of the next round of APG MEs, Sri Lanka will be one of the first non-FATF countries to be assessed against the revised FATF standards including amended beneficial ownership measures, new risk assessment requirements, enhanced asset recovery measures, virtual asset regulation and supervision, and others. Sri Lanka has a number of statutory reforms underway some of which address these new standards.

With Sri Lanka’s 4th round ME scheduled to commence in March 2025 and an onsite visit in the latter half of that year (MER to be adopted in July 2026), Sri Lanka is keen to implement its legislative agenda at an early date to establish an effective AML/CFT system and to avoid FATF grey listing. A recent IMF paper (May 2021) on the impact of grey-listing on capital flows found that a large and statistically significant reduction in capital inflows results from grey listing - capital inflows decline on average by 7.6 percent of GDP when the country is grey-listed. Sri Lanka has been ‘grey listed’ by the FATF on two separate occasions in the past with significant impact on its financial system.

In preparing for its evaluation, and to discuss a number of issues including the revised FATF standards, the government invited the APG Co-Chair from Canada, Mr Julien Brazeau, the Executive Secretary, Dr Gordon Hook, and the Director of Mutual Evaluations, Mr David Shannon, to participate in a number of meetings with high-level officials. Significantly, the delegation met with the President of Sri Lanka, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Chief Justice of Sri Lanka, a Justice of the Supreme Court, and the Governor of the Central Bank. The delegation also met with a significant number of officials from the private sector.

Sri Lanka has demonstrated its high level of commitment to the next evaluation process and is preparing for a suite of legislation to give effect to its commitments to the APG and to the global AML/CFT network.

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Financial Investigative Techniques Workshop - September 04th to 08th, 2023

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The Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka (FIU-SL) participated in the “Financial Investigative Techniques Workshop", hosted by the U.S. Department of Justice-International Criminal Investigation Training Assistance Program (ICITAP) and the Internal Revenue Services (IRS).

The program was held during the period September 04 - 08, 2023 at Weligama Bay Marriott Resort & Spa. The attendees included representatives from various Sri Lankan government organizations engaged in AML/CFT analysis and investigations including Financial Intelligence Unit-Sri Lanka, Attorney General's Department, Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption, and Sri Lanka Police. Similarly, there were officials from Maldives representing organizations such as Financial Intelligence Unit–Maldives, Attorney General’s Office, Anti-Corruption Commission, and Maldives Police Service.

Creating Awareness on Financial Scams - Daily FT (August 28, 2023)

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With the increase of financial scams in recent years, creating awareness on scam typologies and understanding ways in which fraudsters operate is crucial to combat financial fraud.

Recently, HSBC in collaboration with the Central Bank of Sri Lanka conducted an informative session for bank staff in Sri Lanka on financial scams prevalent in the country at the bank’s head office in Colombo.

The session featured Guest Speaker Central Bank of Sri Lanka Financial Intelligence Unit Intelligence Analysis Division 1 and 2 Senior Assistant Director/Head Dilan Siriwardana. During the session, participants were informed of common scams, the best practices for protecting personal information and important ways to avoid and detect such scams. The session also highlighted the responsibilities of both financial institutions and the general public on the timeliness of reporting scams to local authorities.

As the leading international bank in Sri Lanka, HSBC believes that the collaboration between banks, the regulator, law enforcement and the general public is essential to drive awareness. Staying vigilant and being aware of financial scams will be an important way in which banks and customers can protect themselves and their businesses in a timely manner.

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FIU Sri Lanka Urges all Accountants to comply with the provisions of the Financial Transactions Reporting Act, No. 06 of 2006.

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The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of Sri Lanka, in collaboration with the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka (ICASL) urges all Accountants and Accounting Firms / Partnerships to comply with the provisions of the Financial Transactions Reporting Act, No. 06 of 2006.



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WHY DOES TRADE-BASED MONEY LAUNDERING MATTER TO SRI LANKA?

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In January 2023 with the intervention of the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), a golden opportunity was turned out for officials of Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), respective staff who engage in international trade transactions in commercial banks and other financial institutions, several officers of SL Customs and investigators to improve their knowledge on a topical issue, i.e., “Trade-Based Money Laundering (TBML)”. A two-day workshop was held on TBML at the Center for Banking Studies at Rajagiriya, Sri Lanka on the 25th and 26th of January 2023. The workshop was held for Sri Lanka by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) under the sponsorship of their Trade and Supply Chain Finance Program (TSCFP) as per a request made by Ms. Enoka Mohotti, Director of the FIU – and as part of ADB’s ongoing TBML pilot implementation in five countries, including Sri Lanka, to improve TBML detection and analysis. The TBML pilot co-leads from the ADB, Ms. Catherine Estrada and Mr. Alexander Malaket attended the event, as well as the TSCFP Relationship Manager for Sri Lanka, Ms. Neha Noronha. The TBML workshop entitled “Countering Trade-Based Money Laundering Master Class” featured two international subject matter experts, Mr. Nathan Lynch and Mr. Gavin Coles, who were engaged by the ADB to deliver the program (two sights received from the experts have also been included in this note). The same program will be rolled out to four other countries which are part of the TBML pilot, namely Bangladesh, Mongolia, Nepal, and Pakistan.

Money Laundering Workshop - August 21st to 25th, 2023

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The Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka (FIU-SL) participated at the “Money Laundering Workshop," hosted by the U.S. Department of Justice-International Criminal Investigation Training Assistance Program (ICITAP) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The program was held during the period August 21-25, 2023 at Movenpick Hotel, Colombo 03 with the participation of officials from Attorney General Department, Criminal Investigation Department, Financial & Commercial Crime Investigation Division, Illegal Assets Investigation Division, Counter Terrorism Investigation Division, Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption and FIU-SL.

The program aimed to provide knowledge on the threats and challenges of terrorist financing, the essential elements of terrorist financing, money laundering in casinos, informal value transfer systems and Hawalas, corresponding banking, peer-to-peer payment services, transnational organized crimes, and virtual currency investigations. The program also offered a valuable opportunity to establish relationships and coordination among the participating institutions/divisions and to build a stronger network to enhance the quality and productivity of money laundering investigations. Furthermore, this workshop was conducted as an open engagement session with participants and instructors. It included several case studies and practical sessions to enhance the investigative experience of the participants.

Notice to General Public - Participating in Pyramid Schemes is a Punishable Offence (August 23, 2023)

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The Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) has determined that the entities mentioned in the notice conduct and/or have conducted prohibited schemes.

Any person who directly or indirectly initiates, offers, promotes, advertises, conducts, finances, manages or directs a prohibited type pyramid scheme shall be guilty of a punishable offence.

CBSL denies the claim of certain elements of the society that it has reached some agreements with the determined institutions. Further, CBSL has requested the Hon. Attorney General to consider instituting criminal proceedings in term of the provisions of Section 83C of the Banking Act.

FIU Sri Lanka Engages with 'Uppsala Security' in a Successful Joint Analysis of the Blockchain Transactions to Counter the Emerging Trend of Cryptocurrency Usage in Illegal Schemes in Sri Lanka - August 16, 2023

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Headquartered in Singapore, Uppsala Security is a crowdsourced threat intelligence organization that has assisted more than 1400 cryptocurrency theft victims and has also assisted Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs) in several countries in their cryptocurrency investigations.

Workshop on Enhancing Port Security Capacities to Reduce Proliferation Risks - August 16 - 18, 2023

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The Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka (FIU-SL) participated at the “Workshop on Enhancing Port Security Capacities to More Effectively Detect and Halt Sanctions Evasions and Reduce Proliferation Risks " funded by the U.S. Department of State’s Export Control and Border Security (EXBS) and the Embassy of the United States of America. The program was held during the period August 16-18, 2023 at Courtyard by Marriott, Colombo City Centre with the participation of stakeholders related to port security representing Sri Lanka Ports Authority, Sri Lanka Customs, Law Enforcement Professionals of Sri Lanka.

The program aimed at providing knowledge on best practices for maintaining integrity within international trade flows in order to strengthen national and international security. Topics included practical implementation of security mandates from the United Nations, International Maritime Organization, World Customs Organization; port cybersecurity; financial integrity tools for port security; and due diligence in cargo targeting and risk management. Accordingly, participants gained more insights from experienced resource persons for enhancing port security capacities to reduce proliferation risks.

Awareness Programme on AML/CFT Compliance Obligations for the Gem and Jewellery Sector - August 16, 2023

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Awareness Programme on Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) Compliance Obligations for Gem and Jewellery Sector, is to be held on 16th August, 2023 at the Centre for Banking Studies in Rajagiriya.

Mrs. Enoka Mohotty, the Director of the Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka (FIU), Mr. Viraj De Silva, the Chairman of the National Gem and Jewellery Association as well as officials of the FIU will be sharing their expertise with the participants.

Cabinet Approves Comprehensive National Policy to Combat Money Laundering, Terror Financing - Daily FT (August 09, 2023)

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The Cabinet of Ministers this week approved the implementation of the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism National Policy 2023-2028 to fortify the country’s financial integrity and security.

This strategic initiative, presented by President in his capacity as the Finance, Economic Stabilisation, and National Policies Minister seeks to address vulnerabilities and strengthen the framework for curbing money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism in Sri Lanka.

The policy's implementation is poised to be a comprehensive response to the multifaceted challenges posed by financial malfeasance and unlawful funding mechanisms. Rooted in a meticulous analysis of the local landscape, the policy unfolds a series of strategic action plans meticulously designed to tackle the identified vulnerabilities in the prevention of money laundering and the thwarting of terrorist financing.

Central to this formidable endeavour is the steadfast role of the Financial Intelligence Unit, established by the provisions outlined in the Financial Transactions Reporting Act, No. 6 of 2006. Operating under the auspices of the Central Bank, this unit plays a pivotal role in enforcing the stipulations designed to deter money laundering, terrorist financing, and other illicit activities outlined within the Act.

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Cabinet approves Anti Money Laundering National Policy - Daily News (August 09, 2023)

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The Cabinet of Ministers on Monday approved the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism National Policy for 2023 to 2028 to prevent money laundering, financing of terrorism and other illegal activities. The Cabinet Paper was presented by President Ranil Wickremesinghe in his capacity as the Finance, Economic Stabilization and National Policies Minister.

The Cabinet decision will help implement the action plans that include the tasks to be performed by the respective institutions as a solution to identified weaknesses in preventing money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism.

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Sri Lanka Advances AML-CFT Policy as Asia Pacific Review Looms - Daily Mirror (August 09, 2023)

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The Cabinet nod has been granted to implement the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML-CFT) National Policy ahead of the third mutual evaluation conducted by Asia Pacific Regional Group on Money Laundering.

This week, President Ranil Wickremesinghe, also serving as the Minister of Finance, Economic Stabilisation, and National Policies requested Cabinet of Ministers’ approval to enact the 2023-2028 National Policy for Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism. The aim is to address existing vulnerabilities in Sri Lanka’s money laundering and prevention of terrorism financing efforts, and to implement actionable plans delineating responsibilities of relevant institutions.

The Financial Action Task Force, the intergovernmental body that sets international standards to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing, has introduced 40 recommendations to be implemented by all countries. The Department of Government Information noted that the Asia Pacific Regional Group on Money Laundering, the regional body of the Financial Action Task Force, is currently evaluating whether Sri Lanka is complying with the recommendations of the Financial Action Task Force.

SL at 2023 Annual Plenary of Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering - Daily FT (July 31, 2023)

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Central Bank Governor and National Coordinating Committee on Anti-Money Laundering/Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) Chairman Dr Nandalal Weerasinghe, attended the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG) Annual Plenary and the ensuing Technical Assistance and Training (TA&T) Forum from 11 to 14 July 2023 in Vancouver, Canada.

The Sri Lankan delegation consisted of the expert assessors participating in the respective Mutual Evaluations of the Peoples’ Democratic Republic of Lao (Lao PDR), Nepal and Brunei. The annual Plenary brought together over 300 delegates from the 42 APG member countries, observer institutions and jurisdictions, and private sector stakeholders to discuss issues concerning countering serious financial crime, including money laundering (ML), terrorist financing (TF), and proliferation financing relating to weapons of mass destruction (PF).

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CB Governor attends Asia Pacific Group’s Money Laundering Annual Plenary - The Island (July 31, 2023)

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Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe, the Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka in his capacity as the chairman of the National Coordinating Committee (NCC) on Anti Money Laundering/Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT), represented the Sri Lankan delegation to the 2023 Annual Plenary of the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG) and the ensuing Technical Assistance and Training (TA&T) Forum held in Vancouver, Canada from 11 – 14 July 2023.

The Sri Lankan delegation consisted of the expert assessors participating in the respective Mutual Evaluations of the Peoples’ Democratic Republic of Lao (Lao PDR), Nepal and Brunei. The annual Plenary brought together over 300 delegates from the 42 APG member countries, observer institutions and jurisdictions, and private sector stakeholders to discuss issues concerning countering serious financial crime, including money laundering (ML), terrorist financing (TF), and proliferation financing relating to weapons of mass destruction (PF).

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CBSL puts shine on AML compliance requirements for gem and jewellery sector - Daily FT (July 31, 2023)

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The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka organised an awareness program for the gem and jewellery sector on “Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) Compliance Obligations and New Developments” on 4 July 2023.

The keynote address was delivered by CBSL Governor and National Coordinating Committee on AML/CFT Chairman Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe, and Industries Ministry Secretary J.M. Thilaka Jayasundara, National Gem and Jewellery Authority (NGJA) Chairman Viraj De Silva, Sri Lanka Gem and Jewellery Association (SLGJA) President Ajward Deen, and Lanka Gem Dealers and Miners Association (LGDMA) President U.G. Chandrasena also graced the occasion. The event was participated by over 100 participants from the industry.

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Anti-Money Laundering Compliance and the Legal Profession - The Island (July 30, 2023)

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Addressing the recent Bar Association Convention in Nuwara-Eliya, President Ranil Wickremasinghe highlighted the need for Sri Lanka to be in readiness for the forthcoming Financial Action Task Force (FATF) assessment on Sri Lanka as its ratings on the degree of compliance by the country will be crucial for Sri Lanka to attract investors.

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) leads global action to tackle money laundering, terrorist and proliferation financing. The 39-member body sets international standards to ensure national authorities can effectively go after illicit funds linked to drugs trafficking, the illicit arms trade, cyber fraud and other serious crimes. Sri Lanka is subject to the FATF mandate through the intermediation from the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG) consisting of 42 member jurisdictions, of which, Sri Lanka is a founding member.

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Financial Intelligence Unit Inks Two MoU's with FIUs of Timor Leste and Lao PDR - Daily News (July 28, 2023)

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Governor of Central Bank Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe, in his capacity as the Chairman of the National Coordinating Committee (NCC) on Anti Money Laundering,Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT), represented the Sri Lankan delegation to the 2023 Annual Plenary of the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG) and the ensuing Technical Assistance and Training (TA&T) Forum held in Vancouver, Canada from July 11 – 14 ,2023.

During the Plenary, two Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) were signed between the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of Sri Lanka and the FIUs of Timor Leste and Lao PDR. These MoUs would assist to enhance international cooperation and collaboration in combating Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing (ML/TF) between the respective jurisdictions.

CB Governor attends 2023 Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering Annual Plenary in Canada - Daily Mirror (July 28, 2023)

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Central Bank Governor Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe in his capacity as the Chairman of the National Coordinating Committee (NCC) on Anti Money Laundering/Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT), represented the Sri Lankan delegation to the 2023 Annual Plenary of the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG) and the ensuing Technical Assistance and Training (TA&T) Forum held in Vancouver, Canada from July 11 – 14.

The Sri Lankan delegation consisted of expert assessors participating in the respective Mutual Evaluations of the Peoples’ Democratic Republic of Lao (Lao PDR), Nepal and Brunei.

The annual Plenary brought together over 300 delegates from the 42 APG member countries, observer institutions and jurisdictions, and private sector stakeholders to discuss issues concerning countering serious financial crime, including money laundering (ML), terrorist financing (TF), and proliferation financing relating to weapons of mass destruction (PF).

Counter Transnational Organized Crimes (CTOC) Training Programme - July 24-28, 2023

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The Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka (FIU-SL) participated at the “Sri Lanka Combat Wildlife Trafficking (CWT) Awareness, Capacity, and Empowerment (ACE) Program," funded by the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) currently being carried out by Environmental Foundation (Guarantee) Limited (EFL) in coordination with the Department of Wildlife Conservation and Freeland.

The program was held during the period July 24-28, 2023 at Goldi Sands Hotel, Negombo with the participation of stakeholders related to wildlife sector representing Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka, Department of Wildlife Conservation, Department of Forest Conservation, Ministry of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, Sri Lanka Navy, Commission to Investigate Bribery or Corruption, Sri Lanka Police and Sri Lanka Coast Guard.

CBSL Governor Attends Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering Annual Plenary - The Morning

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Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) Governor Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe, in his capacity as the Chairman of the National Coordinating Committee (NCC) on Anti-Money Laundering/Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT), represented the Sri Lankan delegation to the 2023 Annual Plenary of the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG) and the ensuing Technical Assistance and Training (TA&T) Forum held in Vancouver, Canada from 11-14 July 2023.

The Sri Lankan delegation consisted of the expert assessors participating in the respective Mutual Evaluations of the Peoples’ Democratic Republic of Lao (Lao PDR), Nepal, and Brunei. The annual plenary brought together over 300 delegates from the 42 APG member countries, observer institutions and jurisdictions, and private sector stakeholders to discuss issues concerning countering serious financial crime, including money laundering (ML), terrorist financing (TF), and proliferation financing relating to weapons of mass destruction (PF).

A Message to the General Public from the Central Bank of Sri Lanka - July 21, 2023

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The Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) urges the general public to be aware of fraudulent businesses carried out on social media, misusing the official logo of the CBSL.

The CBSL denies any connection to the advertised businesses.

AML compliance requirements for Gem and Jewellery sector in Sri Lanka - Ceylon Today (July 21, 2023)

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The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka organised an awareness programme for the gem and jewellery sector on ‘Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) Compliance Obligations and New Developments’ on 4 July 2023.

The keynote address was delivered by Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe, Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka/Chairman, National Coordinating Committee on AML/CFT. J. M. Thilaka Jayasundara, Secretary to the Ministry of Industries, Viraj de Silva, Chairman of the National Gem and Jewellery Authority (NGJA), Ajward Deen, President of Sri Lanka Gem & Jewellery Association (SLGJA) and U.G. Chandrasena, President, Lanka Gem Dealers and Miners Association also graced the occasion. Over 100 participants from the industry attended the event.

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Annual Plenary of the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG) and the Ensuing Technical Assistance and Training Forum held in Vancouver, Canada (July 11 – 14, 2023)

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Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe, the Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka, in his capacity as the Chairman of the National Coordinating Committee (NCC) on Anti Money Laundering/Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT), represented the Sri Lankan delegation to the 2023 Annual Plenary of the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG) and the ensuing Technical Assistance and Training (TA&T) Forum held in Vancouver, Canada from 11 – 14 July 2023.

The Sri Lankan delegation comprised Dr. Subhani Keerthiratne (Additional Director of the FIU), Dr. Ayesh Ariyasinghe (Additional Director of the FIU) and Mr. Dilan Siriwardana (Senior Assistant Director of the FIU).

The event allowed Sri Lanka's FIU to strengthen international cooperation by signing two Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) with the FIUs of Lao PDR and Timor Leste.

Governor Central Bank emphasizes importance of real estate sector - Daily News (July 11, 2023)

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Governor Central Bank, Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe emphasized the importance of real estate sector and highlighted that the successful implementation of the AML/CFT obligations within the sector would ensure that Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (ML/TF) risks in the sector are mitigated while fulfilling the obligations under international recommendations, governance and anti-corruption framework.

He stated that such efforts would further strengthen the AML/CFT framework of the country and invited the sector stakeholders to work closely with the FIU and with the Ministry of Urban Development and Housing towards this national endeavor.

He made these remarks at the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka organized awareness programme for the real estate sector on ‘Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) Compliance Obligations and New Developments’ in Colombo last week.

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Ramp up AML measures: CBSL Chief advises real estate agents - Daily FT (July 10, 2023)

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The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka organised an awareness program for the real estate sector on “Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) Compliance Obligations and New Developments” on 26 June 2023.

The keynote address was delivered by CBSL Governor and National Coordinating Committee on AML/CFT Chairman Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe.

Urban Development and Housing Ministry Secretary W.S. Sathyananda, Construction Industry Development Authority (CIDA) Chairman Eng. R H Ruvinis, and Hardy Jamaldeen representing the real estate sector also addressed the gathering. Condominium Management Authority (CMA) Chairman Sarana Karunaratna also graced the occasion.

The event saw over 120 participants from the industry as well as officials from the Registrar General’s Department, Colombo Land Registry, Condominium Developers’ Association of Sri Lanka (CDASL), CMA, The Ceylon Chamber of Commerce and Urban Development Authority.

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Awareness Programme for Gem and Jewellery Sector on "AML/CFT Compliance Obligations and New Developments" - July 04, 2023

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An awareness session on “AML/CFT Compliance Obligations and New Developments for the Gem and Jewellery Sector” was conducted for the members of the gem and jewellery sector on July 04, 2023 from 2.00 pm to 4.00 pm at the Centre for Banking Studies (CBS), Rajagiriya. The primary objective of the session was to augment awareness regarding AML/CFT compliance obligations and discuss recent developments in the gem and jewellery sector, with a specific focus on enhancing Sri Lanka's AML/CFT standards.

The keynote address of the session was delivered by Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe, Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL)/Chairman of the National Coordinating Committee on AML/CFT. His expertise and leadership provided valuable insights into the subject matter. Mrs. J M Thilaka Jayasundara, the Secretary to the Ministry of Industries, shared her perspective, drawing from her extensive experience in the field. Further, Mr. Viraj De Silva, Chairman of the National Gem and Jewellery Authority, offered his insights on the compliance obligations and recent developments in the sector.

Awareness Programme for Real Estate Sector on "AML/CFT Compliance Obligations and New Developments" - June 26, 2023

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An awareness session on “AML/CFT Compliance Obligations and New Developments for the Real Estate Sector” was conducted for the members of the real estate sector on June 26, 2023 from 2.00 pm to 4.00 pm at the Centre for Banking Studies (CBS), Rajagiriya. The key objective of the session was to enhance awareness on the AML/CFT compliance obligations, new developments of the real estate sector while discussing the way of improving the AML/CFT standard of Sri Lanka.

The keynote address of the session was delivered by Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe, Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL)/ Chairman, National Coordinating Committee on AML/CFT. Guest speaker, Mr. W S Sathyananda, Secretary to the Ministry of Urban Development and Housing addressed the audience with his noteworthy speech on “The Way Forward for the Real Estate Sector”.

The resource persons, Dr. Ayesh Ariyasinghe, Additional Director of the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) conducted an elaborative presentation on “Compliance Obligations of the Real Estate Sector and Improving the AML/CFT Standard of Sri Lanka” while Mr. Hardy Jamaldeen, Director, Lanka Reality Investments (Pvt) Ltd, contributed to the session by sharing his knowledge and experience representing the real estate sector. Mr. Sarana Karunarathne, Chairman of Condominium Management Authority also graced the occasion.

Workshop on Monitoring Transactions, Identifying Suspicious Patterns and Suspicious Transaction Reporting for Licensed Finance Companies - June 19, 2023

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Woprkshop on “Monitoring Transactions, Identifying Suspicious Patterns and Suspicious Transaction Reporting for Licensed Finance Companies", is to be held on 19th June 2023 at the Centre for Banking Studies - Rajagiriya.

Director of the Illegal Assets Investigation Division of the Criminal Investigation Department and the officials of the Financial Intelligence Unit, will be sharing their expertise in the workshop.

Training Program on "AML/CFT Compliance Obligations" for Licensed Stockbrokers - June 13, 2023

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The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of Sri Lanka organized a training program for the compliance staff of Licensed Stockbrokers on anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) compliance obligations”. The program was held on June 13, 2023, at the Centre for Banking Studies, Rajagiriya.

Officials representing Licensed Stockbroker Companies, Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of Sri Lanka as well as Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) participated for the program. Keynote address was made by Mrs. T M J Y P Fernando, Senior Deputy Governor of Central Bank of Sri Lanka.

Training Program on "AML/CFT Compliance Obligations" for Insurance Companies - June 12, 2023

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The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of Sri Lanka organized a training program for the compliance staff of Insurance Companies on anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) compliance obligations”. The program was held on June 12, 2023, at the Centre for Banking Studies, Rajagiriya.

Officials representing Licensed Insurance Companies as well as Insurance Regulatory Commission of Sri Lanka (IRCSL), attended the program. The audience was addressed by officials of the FIU as well as Mrs. Damayanthi Fernando, Director General of IRCSL, as the sector regulator.

Sri Lanka prepares for upcoming Country Assessment on AML CFT - Daily FT (June 05, 2023)

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President Ranil Wickre-mesinghe on Saturday said that Sri Lanka’s next country assessment on Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism will commence soon.

The assessment, slated to commence within 90 weeks, holds immense significance as it directly impacts the country›s ease of doing business rating and its ability to atract foreign investments.

Speaking at the Bar Association of Sri Lanka-organised National Law Conference at the Grand Hotel in Nuwara Eliya, the President said Sri Lanka has been informed about the impending country assessment on anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism. “This assessment holds significant weight as Sri Lanka›s compliance in these areas is crucial for enhancing the ease of doing business rating and atracting foreign investments,” Wickremesinghe stressed.

Country assessment on Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism coming up: President - Daily Mirror Online (June 05, 2023)

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Sri Lanka is looking to roll-out the next country assessment on Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT), President Ranil Wickremesinghe announced over the weekend, an effort that is imperative and directly impacts the country’s ease of doing business ranking and ability to attract foreign investments.

As it has become apparent for Sri Lanka to address the gaps in the anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing framework, delaying the endeavour would negatively impact the island nation, Wickremesinghe cautioned.

“Failure to rectify these gaps poses a potential risk of Sri Lanka once again being labelled as a country with strategic deficiencies. Such a designation could have severe adverse effects on the country’s economic development,” said the President while addressing the National Law Conference on Saturday.

Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism: Sri Lanka prepares for the next assessment - The Morning (June 05, 2023)

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President Ranil Wickremesinghe has revealed that Sri Lanka’s next country assessment on Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism is scheduled to commence soon.

“I want to emphasise that we are preparing for the upcoming country assessment on anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism. Sri Lanka recognises the importance of addressing the identified gaps, strengthening our governance framework, and ensuring compliance. With the support and cooperation of all stakeholders, we strive for sustainable economic development and international cooperation,” said President Wickremesinghe.

Sri Lanka Prepares for Assessment on Anti-Money Laundering & Countering Financing of Terrorism - Lanka Business Online (June 05, 2023)

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President Wickremesinghe addressing the National Law Conference said that Sri Lanka’s next country assessment on Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism will commence soon.

The assessment, slated to commence soon, holds immense significance as it directly impacts the country’s ease of doing business rating and its ability to attract foreign investments. In an important development, Sri Lanka has been informed about the impending country assessment on anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism. This assessment holds significant weight as Sri Lanka’s compliance in these areas is crucial for enhancing the ease of doing business rating and attracting foreign investments.

As discussions unfold, it becomes apparent that addressing the identified gaps in the anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing framework is of utmost importance. Failure to rectify these gaps poses a potential risk of Sri Lanka once again being labelled as a country with strategic deficiencies. Such a designation could have severe adverse effects on the country’s economic development.

Notice to General Public - Participating in Pyramid Schemes is a Punishable Offence (May 31, 2023)

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The Central Bank of Sri Lanka has determined that the entities mentioned in the notice conduct and/or have conducted prohibited schemes.

Any person who directly or indirectly initiates, offers, promotes, advertises, conducts, finances, manages or directs a prohibited type pyramid scheme shall be guilty of a punishable offence.

Workshop on AML and CFT for Licensed Finance Compnanies organized by the Finance Houses Association - May 31, 2023

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The Finance Houses Association (FHA) of Sri Lanka organized a workshop for the Compliance Officers of Licensed Finance Companies (LFCs) on anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) where officials of Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of Sri Lanka were invited as resource persons. The workshop was held at the Compliance Forum of the FHA on May 31, 2023, at People’s Leasing & Finance PLC Auditorium.

The workshop was conducted in a hybrid format, where over 100 participants participated virtually to further strengthen their knowledge of compliance requirements for AML/CFT in order to enable them to carry out AML related functions more effectively.

Interpol's Global Action on Cybercrime Extended (GLACY+) Workshop in Sri Lanka - May 22-24, 2023

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The Interpol GLACY+ workshop was held in Sri Lanka from May 22 to 24. Experts from various fields joined forces at the Interpol Glacy+ workshop to combat cyber-enabled money laundering.

This three-day workshop promoted best practices for cybercrime and financial crime investigations, bringing together practitioners from the Attorney Generals Department, the Ministry of Justice, the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) and Law Enforcement Authorities (LEA), representing officers from the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), and various units of the CID, which included the Human Trafficking and Maritime Division, Illegal Assets Investigation Division (IAID), Financial Commercial and Crime Investigation Division (FCCID), Counter Terrorism Investigation Department (CTID), Homicide and Serious Investigation Crime Division, Organized Crime and Gang Robbery Division, Computer Crime Investigation Department, Prosecution Unit, and Social Media Unit.

The event focused on comprehensively understanding the latest trends in collecting and laundering criminal proceeds from cybercrimes. Its primary objective was to increase awareness of cybercriminals' constantly evolving modus operandi, empowering law enforcement agencies to stay one step ahead in their fight against financial crimes. The participants shared their expertise and best practices in cyber-financial investigations, further enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of future investigations.

The Interpol Glacy+ workshop held in Sri Lanka was a resounding success, providing invaluable insights into the world of cybercrime, and it was a crucial platform for tackling the growing challenges of cyber-facilitated money laundering.

Series of Awareness Sessions for the Officers of the Sri Lanka Police

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In collaboration with the National Police Academy (NPA), the Financial Intelligence Unit is conducting a series of awareness sessions for the officers of the Sri Lanka Police. These awareness sessions are being held as a part of the training programme for the police officers to be promoted as Chief Inspectors.

The most recent sessions on the awareness programme were carried out virtually on 04.01.2023, 26.05.2023 and 29.05.2023 by Ms. Wangeesha Karunarathna, Deputy Director of the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) and Mr. Nimantha Athukorala, Senior Assistant Director of the FIU on the topic “Money Laundering (ML), Terrorist Financing (TF) and The Role of the FIU”. This includes overview of ML/TF/Proliferation Financing (PF), global effort to combat ML/TF/PF, Sri Lanka’s legal framework and how FIU can facilitate law enforcement agencies to conduct ML/TF investigations.

The FIU continues to work in collaboration with the NPA, to enhance the knowledge of the officers of Sri Lanka Police through similar awareness raising sessions in the future.

Notice to General Public - Pyramid Type Prohibites Schemes (March 21, 2023)

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In relation to the examination conducted under Section 83C of the Banking Act, No. 30 of 1988, the Central Bank of Sri Lanka has determined that the entities mentioned in the notice and Directors, Founders and Promoters of the said entities conduct and/or have conducted prohibited schemes in contravention to the provisions of Section 83C of the said Act.

Countering Trade Based Money Laundering Masterclass for Licensed Banks, Law Enforcement Agencies and Regulators in Sri Lanka - January 25-26, 2023

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The Asian Development Bank’s Trade and Supply Chain Finance Programme, in collaboration with the Financial Intelligence Unit of Sri Lanka (FIU), organized a two-day workshop for Licensed Banks (LBs), Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs) and Regulators on countering Trade Based Money Laundering (TBML) during January 25-26, 2023 at the Centre for Banking Studies. Over 100 participants attended the workshop. Officers from LBs together with officers from the Sri Lanka Police, Sri Lanka Customs and FIU participated the first day of the workshop while the second day was dedicated to LEAs and FIU.

The programme was inaugurated with welcome remarks by Mrs. Enoka Mohotty, Director/FIU. Introductory remarks on the ADB’s Trade and Supply Chain Finance Programme and the TBML Pilot Initiative were made by Ms. Neha Noronha, the Relationship Manager for ADB's Trade and Supply Chain Finance Programme in South Asia and Mr. Alexander R Malaket, Executive Consultant of ADB’s Trade and Supply Chain Finance Programme and the President, OPUS Advisory Services International Inc.

Mr. Gavin Coles, an internationally experienced risk and compliance professional with a financial crime focus, and Mr. Nathan Lynch, an experienced trainer, educator, speaker and writer in the fields of money laundering and financial intelligence conducted the workshop and it was assisted by Ms. Catherine D Estrade, AML/CFT Consultant, Private Sector Operations Department of the ADB.

Workshop was successfully concluded with the closing remarks delivered by Mrs. Mohotty, Director/FIU who graciously acknowledged of the role played by resource persons and of the assistance rendered by ADB to address a national concern in combating TBML.

How to Protect Your Money from Scams? - January 5, 2023

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A public awareness session on "How to Protect Your Money from Scams?" will be broadcasted live on Independent Television Network (ITN) on January 5, 2023 at 7.00 AM.

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FIU Sri Lanka

 

The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of Sri Lanka was established in March 2006 as an autonomous body under the Ministry of Finance and Planning. The FIU was reorganized in February 2007 as an independent institution within the Central Bank’s framework and administrative structure.

 

Vision

 

To be the trusted focal agency committed to prevent Money Laundering and counter Financing of Terrorism ensuring financial integrity, safety and security.

 

Mission

 

To provide actionable financial intelligence and lead national efforts by effectively partnering with domestic and global stakeholders in combating Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing.

News & Events
  • New Press Release - The FIU of Sri Lanka Releases the Sanitized Report of the Second National Risk Assessment on ML and TF (September 14, 2023)
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  • Press Release - AML Compliance Requirements for Gem and Jewellery Sector in Sri Lanka (July 19, 2023)
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  • Press Release - Real Estate Agents are Advised to Ramp up AML Measures (July 07, 2023)
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  • Circular 02/2023 - Institutional Compliance of Real Estate Sector under the Financial Transactions Reporting Act, No. 06 of 2006
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  • Circular 01/2023 – Calling for Due Vigilance on Compliance Lapses
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