The European Commission has announced the referral of Austria, Belgium and the Netherlands to the Court of Justice of the European Union, with a request for financial sanctions, after failing to fully implement the 4th Anti-Money Laundering Directive (AMLD4) into their national law.
It comes following an assessment of the notified measures by these Member States, which saw the Commission come to the conclusion that AMLD4 has not been fully transposed into national law.
The incomplete transposition concerns fundamental aspects of the anti-money laundering framework, such as betting and gambling legislation (Austria), mechanisms under which the Financial Intelligence Units exchange documents and information (Belgium), and the information to be provided on the beneficial ownership of corporate and other legal entities (Netherlands).
Executive Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis stated on the decision: “We have robust EU rules in place but they must be applied consistently and efficiently. We will make sure that everyone in both private and public sectors applies the rules rigorously. We have launched many infringement procedures to ensure the full transposition and application of our rules.”
All Member States had to implement the rules of the AMLD4 by 26 June 2017. After this deadline passed, the Commission opened infringement proceedings against all Member States, as none of them had notified complete transposition of AMLD4.
In total there are open infringement procedures on incomplete transposition against eight Member States: three Member States have received Reasoned Opinions, proceedings against two Member States are pending before the Court, and today the Commission has decided to refer another three Member States to the Court.