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The Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) urges all designated non-financial businesses and professions (DNFBPs) to register with the FIC to fulfil their risk and compliance obligations. 

Amendments to schedule 1 of the FIC Act came into effect on December 19 2022, which saw the inclusion of additional categories of institutions and businesses. 

DNFBPs include trust and company service providers, credit providers, estate agents, attorneys, trust advocates, high-value goods dealers, money and value transfer service providers and gambling entities. 

What happens if institutions don't register with the FIC

The failure to register with the FIC or to update registration information when there has been a change, amounts to non-compliance in terms of section 61A of the FIC Act. 

Companies that fail to comply with provisions of the FIC Act can be fined up to R10m in respect of natural persons and R50m in respect of any legal persons and/or an imprisonment not exceeding five years. 

What are the FIC Act compliance duties?

Additional obligations of accountable institutions include: 

  • following a risk-based approach to combating money laundering;
  • terrorist and proliferation financing;
  • developing, maintaining and implementing a risk management and compliance programme (RMCP);
  • performing customer due diligence;
  • appointing a person responsible for compliance;
  • scrutinising client information against targeted financial sanctions lists;
  • training employees on the FIC Act and RMCP; and
  • the screening of employees.

DNFBP institutions must also file regulatory reports relating to suspicious and unusual transactions, cash transactions exceeding the prescribed threshold and on property that is linked to sanctioned persons, terrorist activity or terrorist organisations. 

Where and how must accountable institutions register? 

Registration is free and must be completed and submitted to the FIC electronically using goAML, which you can access on the FIC website

The FIC will verify the information supplied and will either approve or reject the registration. Reasons for rejection will be communicated via the e-mail address the institution provides on the system. All registrations must be accompanied by supporting documents, including a certified ID and an authorisation letter on the institution’s letterhead.

Visit the FIC website for guidance notes and public compliance communications

A business must register the entity profile first to generate an organisation ID, and thereafter can register a compliance officer or money laundering reporting officer (MLRO) who will be responsible for fulfilling the entity’s FIC Act obligations.

All institutions must have a compliance officer registered on their goAML profile. Larger institutions may appoint a compliance officer and a MLRO.

No persons may share user credentials on goAML. All users that are required to report on goAML must register their own profiles, as detailed in the FIC directive 2

The goAML accountable institutions registration guide and the draft public compliance communication 5D can assist you in the registration process. There are also video tutorials available.

Visit www.fic.gov.za for guidance notes and public compliance communications. Or contact the FIC’s compliance contact centre on +2712-641-6000 or log an online compliance query on the FIC website.

This article was sponsored by the Financial Intelligence Centre. 

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