The UAE's Ministry of Economy has initiated inspection campaigns to ensure firms under its scrutiny comply with the registration procedures in line with anti-money laundering regulations aimed at curbing international financial crimes.

The ministry said enforcement measures for violating the regulations or failure to register in the systems will come into effect from May 1, 2021.

The UAE passed an anti-money laundering and terrorism financing law in 2018. In February, 2021, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation announced the launch of the ‘Executive Office to Combat Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing' to implement the law.

The inspection campaign targets include brokers, real estate agents, auditors, dealers of precious metals and gemstones, and corporate service providers.

Safeya Al Safi, director of the Anti-Money Laundering Department at the Ministry of Economy, said compliance with the AML law will help improve UAE's business environment: "This will positively impact the business sector by enhancing confidence in the UAE economy and increasing investment flows, spurring growth and recovery."

The fines start from AED50,000 and go up to AED5m and could also lead to the revocation of the licence or the closure of the facility itself.

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