PROFESSIONAL STANDARDS BLOG

Tim Pinkney, Head of Compliance & Regulation, discusses key issues for the practitioner.

OFFICE OF PROFESSIONAL BODY AML SUPERVISION (OPBAS)

In response to the recent Anti-Money Laundering Supervision review from HM Treasury, AIA set out our concerns in relation to the proposed changes around anti-money laundering (AML) supervision which will considerably impact professional bodies and accountants, AIA has also written separately to the Economic Secretary to the Treasury to express similar concerns.

The proposed changes relating to the Office of Professional Body AML Supervision (OPBAS) will create an imbalanced environment where accountants who have consistently demonstrated professional integrity and chosen to adhere to the rules and regulations of a professional body will incur, directly or indirectly, the set up and running costs of OPBAS levied against the professional bodies. 

In contrast, the unregulated sector, choosing the default supervisor, will incur none of these costs. 

AIA fails to see how the creation of the two-tier approach to supervision proposed is in the public interest, as it may drive accountants currently engaged in the regime to opt for the less regulated and less expensive route of the default regulator thus placing an increased burden on the public purse.

OPBAS will be managed by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) with the intention to be operational in January 2018.

AIA will continue to campaign to keep the regulatory and financial burden falling on practising members to a minimum and would welcome any views on this or any other issues affecting your firm.