FATF Recommendation 16 in the context of Virtual Financial Assets

On the 27th August 2020, the Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit (“FIAU”) issued a Consultation Document that sets forth a proposal for the implementation of a subsidiary legislation which was drafted following consultations with the Malta Financial Services Authority, providing for the implementation of Financial Action Task Force (“FATF“) Recommendation 16, otherwise referred to as the ‘Travel Rule’, to transfers of virtual financial assets.

The FATF has extended the remit of Recommendation 16 which will no longer be solely applicable within the realm of traditional transfer of funds, but will now also appertain to transfers of virtual financial assets.

The fundamental objective of the FATF Recommendation 16 is predominately that of suppressing terrorists and criminals from having unimpeded access to services which enable the transfer of funds, including virtual financial assets, as well as, detecting any abuse when fund transfers occur. For this reason, depending on the level of involvement, Recommendation 16 imposes a number of obligations upon services providers to ensure that accurate and complete data on the identity of the originator and beneficiary of any of such transfers are transmitted concurrently.

Feel free to contact us should you require any further assistance on the proposed subsidiary legislation.