Future developments when it comes to clamping down of AML in Switzerland depends on the enforcement of regulations.

It comes following the country’s Finance minister Karin Keller-Sutter looking to eradicate loopholes that enable those looking to take advantage of the system for ill-gotten gains. 

Central to the new strategy is asset owner registration, an area where the region has previously fallen behind European allies. 

Reacting to the new strategy, Chrisol Correia, Chief Strategy Officer at Facctum, commented on Switzerland’s clampdown, describing it as ‘welcome news, that is certainly long overdue’.

Correia continued: “While these new measures are a step forward, their success will rely on whether regulations are enforced consistently, and if penalties are sufficiently severe to be deterrents to breaking the law. 

“The nation’s approach to AML has been criticised in the past as being too lax and the country has recently come under increased pressure to enforce tighter controls in the context of international measures to implement financial sanctions on Russia’s economic interest.”

He went on to state the importance of urgent action and enforcement, as he eyes a new culture for Switzerland when it comes to the financial ecosystem. 

He concluded: “If these measures are to be effective, Switzerland’s regulators will need to put into action a firm stance on financial crime and make sure that financial institutions are acting with urgency to implement a new culture that supports a new approach to financial crime countermeasures. This includes, for example, introducing tougher requirements on customer due diligence and more transparency in the declaration of beneficial ownership.

“Following this announcement, we expect Switzerland’s international partners will be watching to see if the new measures come with real teeth, notably additional supervisory capacity and improved enforcement capability. Many will be looking for early signs of an intent to pursue money launderers and their assets with new urgency and aggression.”