Singapore - Why Is It Important To Know The Beneficial Owner?

Legal News & Analysis - Asia Pacific - Singapore - Regulatory & Compliance

Asia Pacific Legal Updates

 

17 May, 2019

 

Singapore - Why Is It Important To Know The Beneficial Owner?

 

The simple answer is, to fight financial crimes. Financial crimes such as bribery / corruption, particularly, money laundering and terrorist financing.

To have an idea of the level of importance placed on knowing the beneficial owner (“BO”), let’s take a look at a couple of approaches adopted at national level.

There are existing legislations in some jurisdictions that require companies to identify BOs in their companies and file the information with the authority.

The latest country to implement this requirement are The Netherlands. In April 2019, it was proposed to the Dutch Parliament to legislate the register of ultimate beneficial owners. The mandate, to take effect in January 2020, requires companies incorporated / founded in the Netherlands to provide information on the persons who ultimately own or control the companies. Click here for full article.

What would MAS AML/CFT like to know about BO risk in FIs?  


If your firm had recently completed the MAS AML/CFT Control Factor Assessment Questionnaire survey, you would recall a couple of questions asked about customers’ ownership or control structure(s).  Amongst others, the questions included:

 

  • Among other risk factors, does your FI’s framework include risks arising from complexity in customer’s ownership or control structure(s)?
  • How does your FI address the risks arising from such complex ownership or control structures?
  • Among other risk factors, does your FI include risks arising from complexity in customer’s asset/investment holding structure?
  • What are the criteria applied by your FI to identify the risks arising from such complexity in customer’s asset/investment holding structure?

 

 

For further information, please contact:

 

Justin Kendrick, Head of Investments Solutions, Ingenia

contact@ingenia-consultants.com