Anti Money Laundering (AML) in Singapore
Click to Launch Free Tutorial
Money laundering in Singapore is a significant issue. It is an important international financial and investment center, and, in particular, a major offshore financial center. Bank secrecy laws and the lack of routine currency reporting requirements make Singapore an attractive destination for drug traffickers, criminals, terrorist organizations, and their supporters seeking to launder money. Money laundering occurs mainly in the offshore sector, but may also occur in the non-bank financial system, which includes large numbers of moneychangers and remittance agencies.
The Corruption, Drug Trafficking, and Other Serious Crimes (Confiscation of Benefits) Act of 1999 (CDSA) criminalizes the laundering of proceeds from narcotics and 184 other categories of serious offenses, including those committed overseas, which would be considered serious offenses if they had been committed in Singapore.
The Parliament of Singapore passed the Terrorism (Suppression of Financing) Act in 2002, criminalizing the financing of terrorism and placing an obligation on bank employees to report any activity related to this crime to the police immediately.
In 2007, the Monetary Authority of Singapore, which regulates banking and other financial services, issued a notice entitled Prevention of Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism to banks, addressing the need for enhanced Customer Due Diligence (CDD) measures in all financial transactions to prevent criminal behavior.
AML Training in Singapore
The Monetary Authority of Singapore’s Notice to Banks requires banks to institute a training program to teach employees how to maintain appropriate records and identify, detect and report suspicious transactions in order to prevent money laundering.
The Economy of Singapore
Singapore has a highly developed and successful free-market economy. It enjoys a remarkably open and corruption-free environment, stable prices, and a per capita Gross Domestic Product (GDP) equal to that of the four largest West European countries. The economy depends heavily on exports, particularly in consumer electronics and information technology products.
Fiscal stimulus, low interest rates, a surge in exports and internal flexibility led to vigorous growth in 2004 - 2007 with growth averaging 7% annually. The government hopes to establish a new growth path that will be less vulnerable to the global demand cycle for information technology products - it has attracted major investments in pharmaceuticals and medical technology production and will continue efforts to establish Singapore as Southeast Asia's financial and high-tech hub.
Banking In Singapore
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) serves as Singapore's Central Bank.
The MAS manages Singapore's exchange rate, foreign reserves, and liquidity in the banking sector. The MAS is also an integrated supervisor, overseeing all financial institutions in Singapore including banks, insurers, capital market intermediaries, financial advisors, and the stock exchange.
The MAS creates and implements financial policies and ensures a strong corporate governance framework and accounting standards are in place.
The MAS also ensures that the financial industry remains competitive by working closely with other government agencies and financial institutions to develop and promote Singapore as a regional and international financial center.
The currency in Singapore is called the dollar. It is divided into 100 cents, much like the United States Dollar.
Currently, banknotes are issued in 2, 5, 10, 50, 100, 1,000 and 10,000 denominations.
Coins are issued in 1, 5, 10, 20 and 50 cent denominations. There is also a 1 dollar coin.
Other Key Statistics of Singapore
Time Zone: SST (UTC+8).
Location: Asia, islands between Malaysia and Indonesia.
Population: 5,469,700 (2014 estimate.).
Languages Spoken: Mandarin, English, Malay, Tamil.