Hunt down oligarchs’ yachts and planes

28.03.2023 9:31

Hunt down oligarchs’ yachts and planes

View of Luxury Motoryacht

The EPP Group wants to step up the fight against money laundering and terrorism financing in Europe, in particular by Russian oligarchs connected to the war.

“Until now, unfortunately, the fight against money laundering has worked better on paper than in reality. Sanctioning Russian oligarchs proved to be an arduous feat for the Member State authorities. This is why we will close the plethora of loopholes that exists and which make life far too easy for money launderers. We will pave the way to tracing the ultimate beneficial owners of companies, real and land estate. We will also know who owns high value assets such as yachts or private planes, and how the assets were purchased”, explained Luděk Niedermayer MEP, who is Parliament’s negotiator of the updates to the EU’s Anti-Money Laundering Directive.

His comment comes as Parliament’s joint committees on Economic and on Home Affairs vote today on three laws composing the Anti-Money Laundering package that tackle shortcomings in the current regulatory framework.

“So far, Member States work without clear coordination, organising their Financial Intelligence Units (FIUs) and real estate registers totally differently. This makes cross-border access to data and cooperation very ineffective. Certain national authorities are completely blind when faced with money laundering cases. We will boost coordination between national units and enhance EU supervision to fix this”, explained Niedermayer.

Amongst others, the law package will set up a new EU Anti-Money Laundering Agency.

"The birth of this new body marks a game-changing moment in the battle against money laundering across Europe. With direct supervision of high-risk financial companies operating across multiple Member States, we're unleashing a powerful watchdog to sniff out and tackle emerging threats to our financial system", said Emil Radev MEP, who is a negotiator on behalf of the European Parliament regarding the creation of the new Anti-Money Laundering Agency.

“This Agency will strengthen and coordinate the cooperation and exchange of information between FIUs, and will also serve as the new central point, monitoring and enforcing sanctions across Member States. It will support national authorities and act as a main contact point to share information on designated people, their assets and controlled companies. This will come in handy regarding the financial sanctions related to the war in Ukraine”, concluded Radev.

Note to editors

The EPP Group is the largest political group in the European Parliament with 176 Members from all EU Member States

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