Thursday, 25th October, 2001

More Focus On Money Laundering
By: Sohan Das

Labuan: It was a ‘changed world’ after the September 11th incident in United States with heightened security in all sectors, money-laundering activities was one of them.

As such, offshore players should be more vigilant when dealing with customers and exercise ‘Know Your Customers’ policy.

Assistant Governor of Bank Negara Dato Mohamad Daud Hj Dol Moin, said this when speaking at the annual dinner of the Labuan IOFC industry here Tuesday night.

He said: “Although Labuan was not listed as a Tax Haven under the IOFC jurisdiction, and viewed upon as a low-risk regime in money laundering, Labuan Offshore Financial Services Authority (LOFSA) would continue to preserve the island’s reputation. LOFSA is also committed to comply with policies under the United nations and other bodies on Anti-money laundering.”

The new Money Laundering Act 2001 will take effect this month.

He also said that the Offshore Companies Act (OCA) was also undergoing a comprehensive overhaul and urged companies to participate in discussions to provide inputs to help make effective amendments to the Act.

On the future of the industry, Mohamad Daud said that Labuan knowing having 56 offshore banks, 97 world-class insurance companies and 20 trust companies should now provide breadth and depth to the industry and help develop Labuan IOFC as a centre for new innovative products, and also a leading player in Islamic banking and Takaful.

Mohd Daud said that he was confident that Labuan would continue to grow as it was widely viewed upon as a “vibrant, efficient and cost-effective operation base”. He added that since Labuan became and IOFC in 1990 it had attracted about 3,000 businesses.