CIBAFI Holds a Webinar to Combat Money Laundering and Financial Crime

  • 12/Dec/2022

12th December 2022, Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain | The General Council for Islamic Banks and Financial Institutions, the global umbrella of Islamic financial institutions, has successfully held today, a webinar on Anti-Money Laundering and Financial Crime: Recent Regulatory Developments and Strategic Considerations.

Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Financial Crime is an ever-evolving landscape that requires financial institutions to remain updated with the most recent regulatory developments and strategic considerations. The trend towards new technologies, digital currencies, and the widespread use of cashless transactions has led to a need for robust AML systems that can detect and prevent money laundering.

Islamic financial institutions (IFIs) must take a proactive approach by developing robust systems and processes in order to meet the ever-changing needs of the regulatory environment. IFIs must provide regular trainings and other measures to ensure that their staff are at all times able to identify the risks of financial crime as well as to understand and implement prevailing regulations on customer due diligence obligations.

The webinar today brought together subject matter experts to shed the light on the recent developments in AML and the key strategic considerations for IFIs to navigate through its increased regulations and risks.

CIBAFI Secretary General, Dr. Abdelilah Belatik inaugurated the webinar. In his speech, Dr. Belatik, emphasized the importance of technology and putting necessary processes in place in preventing financial crime as well as other illegal activities. The future of financial crime detection, prevention, and mitigation will be based on innovative strategies and a commitment to internal and industry-wide collaboration. For this, CIBAFI is keen on advocating the importance of innovation and digitalisation not only in combatting financial crimes but for the development of the industry in general. The webinar also featured an opening speech from H.E. Mr. Suliman ALJABRIN, Executive Secretary, Middle East & North Africa FATF (MENAFATF).

Following the opening session, a panel discussion explored and shared insights on the evolving sophistication of money laundering activities and the role of the digital economy in its growing concern. The speakers presented the current vulnerabilities of financial institutions and challenges in fighting money laundering. They also highlighted the key considerations for building robust and flexible AML compliance programmes in IFIs. The panelists included Mr. Rinto Teguh Santoso, Director of AML-CFT Group, Financial Services Authority (OJK), Indonesia; Ms. Sophie Barre Guth, Risk and Compliance Director, Groupe BDK, Senegal; Mr. Haider Ali Khan Lodhi, MENA Financial Services Risk Competency Leader, Ernst & Young, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia; and Mr. Shawki Ahwash, Anti-Financial Crime Professional & MLRO, Lebanon. The session was moderated by Ms. May Arshi, Senior Research Analyst at CIBAFI.

CIBAFI also wishes to thank the webinar partners, Al Baraka Bank – Egypt; Cihan Bank for Islamic Investment & Finance – Iraq; and Jaiz Bank PLC - Nigeria for their contribution in making the webinar a success.

CIBAFI continues to support the Islamic financial services industry through various activities and initiatives. These initiatives include providing industry stakeholders with a platform to discuss emerging issues, representing the industry at major global financial events, and sharing knowledge through specialized publications and comprehensive training programmes.

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