by Linda Straker
- Registration of working partners began earlier in May
- Proceed of Crime (amendment) legislation came into effect 1 January 2019
- More than 600 non-profit organisations registered in Grenada
Hundreds of entities are expected to register with the Anti-Money Laundering and Combating Terrorism Financing (AML/CTF) Commission as Grenada put all structures in place to ensure that those who fall under the regulations of the Proceeds of Crime Amendment legislation complies with the law.
Registration began earlier in May and it is expected to continue for a period yet to be determined. The Proceed of Crime (amendment) legislation which was approved by both Houses of Parliament in early 2018 came into effect as of 1 January 2019.
That law makes it mandatory for all organisation operating as non-profit organisations; insurance companies earning more than EC$25 million or less than EC$25 million; large credit unions earning more than EC$50 million; small credit unions earning under EC$50 million; money service business; real estate businesses; lawyers and law firms and accountants; car dealers as well as dealers in precious stones and precious metals to be registered with the commission.
Data at the Ministry of Legal Affairs shows that there are more than 600 non-profit organisations registered in Grenada and they include churches, political organisations, foundations, charities and all category of civil society organisations.
According to the legislation, once an entity is registered the commission must publish at such intervals and in such manner as the commission determines; and books will be “open to public inspection at such times as are reasonably convenient.”
Registration will be annual and will cost each group a different amount, but it will range between EC$100 and EC$500. A registration certificate shall be issued once approved.
“Registration under this section shall be valid for 12 months from the date of the initial registration and is renewable thereafter for a further period of 12 months from each anniversary date of the registration” said the legislation, which explained that all registered entities will have to renew annually.
A regulated entity which fails to register with the commission commits an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine of $5,000 and to a further fine of $300 for each day the offence continues.
The AML/CTF Commission office which is one of the entities combating financial corruption is in the National Stadium as of 1 May 2019. Its principal function is to implement the Anti-Money Laundering policies of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) which is an intergovernmental body/organisation.
The vision of the commission is to “Develop an Effective National System for Combating Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing” while its mission is to “Ensure a Robust Financial Infrastructure to Combat against Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing.”
The purpose of the commission is to
- Advise the Minister of Finance in relation to the detection and prevention of money laundering in Grenada;
- Issue amendments to the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA) Guidelines from time to time
- Advise the Minister as to the participation of Grenada in the international efforts against money laundering and terrorist financing
- Examine Financial Institution that is regulated under any other enactment
- Regulating anti-money laundering activities, and
- Provide education and training.