Riyadh, Asharq Al-Awsat – Following the end of the third consultative meeting of G20 parliamentary heads in Riyadh, during which economic issues were top of the agenda, the Saudi Shura Council passed – with a majority of the votes – an amendment to the anti-money laundering law.
The Saudi anti-money laundering law was first enacted on 23 August, 2003; however a number of Shura Council members sought and succeeded in amending some of its articles, as well as adopting additional articles, imposing greater oversight and establishing an anti-money laundering system.
This approval was issued following detailed consultations between Shura Council members and senior officials at the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency [SAMA]. The amendments were passed with a majority yes vote by the Council.
The proposal to change the anti-money laundering system was passed during the ninth regular session of the Saudi Shura Council, presided over by Saudi Shura Council Chairman Dr. Abdullah Bin Mohammed Al Al-Sheikh.
Following this meeting of the Saudi Shura Council, Shura Council Secretary-General Dr. Muhammed Al-Ghamdi revealed that the Council had approved the change to the anti-money laundering law, which clearly demonstrated Saudi Arabia’s commitment to combatting money laundering. He revealed that a number of articles in the original law were amended, whilst new articles were adopted. The Council also reviewed and discussed the threat posed by money laundering and its negative impact on the economy and society, and its ties to other crimes.
Saudi Shura Council members reviewed the amendments, including the three new acts, the substantive amendments to existing legal articles, and clarification of 20 articles. The Saudi Shura Council stressed the importance of this amendment to the anti-money laundering law, and its importance for Saudi Arabia’s society and economy.
Saudi Arabia had previously been ranked among the top 10 G20 countries in terms of combatting money laundering and terrorism financing. This was according to a report published by the Financial Action Task Force [FATF], an intergovernmental body whose main task is to develop policies to combat money laundering and terrorism financing housed at the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development [OCED] in Paris.
At the beginning of Monday’s Shura Council session, Shura Council head Dr. Abdullah Al-Sheikh thanked the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz and Crown Prince Naif Bin Abdulaziz for their support.