EU AML Directive ‘AMLD5’ Is Set For January And Dutch Crypto Startups Are Not Happy With New Laws

The European Union has a legal framework for anti-money laundering and to counter-terrorist financing. The law, called the Anti-Money Laundering Directive (AMLD), is in its fifth version. According to the European Commission, the legislation has been constantly revised to decrease the risk related to money laundering and terrorist financing.

It appears that the legislation may go through another revision in the form of several additions. A recent report by Coindesk indicates that the Dutch Ministry of Finance (FIN) and the Dutch National Bank (DNB) are working to make stringent additions to the legislation, but without disclosing the addition to the Dutch parliament, and in contravention of the review process which includes oversight by an independent government body.

The proposed additions would impact cryptocurrency firms. The Coindesk report indicates that the new rules would require that cryptocurrency firms cover their own costs of supervision and that they adhere to a registration process. Cryptocurrency firms, on the other hand, reportedly view these requirements as illegal licensing.

Daan Kleinman, the chairman of crypto regulator VBNL and crypto exchange Bitonic sent a letter to the Dutch Parliament on October 30. Reportedly, the translated letter states that they do not think it is “appropriate to start as a new sector under a supervision financing model that has been explicitly adjusted and weighted up in response to the financial crisis.” The letter further indicates that the regulations and spirits are at odds with the advice of the Council of State.

Also according to the report, pressure from critics on regulators is due to past mistakes in the financial industry, primarily those involving lax oversight that has impacted the largest bank in the Netherlands and that led to the 2008 collapse. Simon Lelieveldt, who was employed by DNB as a financial historian, shared with Coindesk in a phone interview,

“If you look at the AML directive in the Netherlands, we had this huge incident where ING was seen to be failing on anti-money laundering measures for about six years.”

“So there's a huge tendency and trend for the central bank to make up for it. The last seven years the central bank is really heavy on integrity supervision because they want to make up for the errors of the past.”

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