FIC Act compliance future-proofs your business

Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) has bolstered South Africa’s financial crime prevention measures, aligning business activities in the country with Financial Action Task Force (FATF) standards through amendments to the Financial Intelligence Centre Act 38 of 2001.

These amendments have broadened the scope of accountable institutions subject to regulatory scrutiny and compliance measures. Consequently, more businesses are required to adhere to the law, strengthening the financial system against money laundering, terrorist financing, and proliferation financing.

Businesses proactively embracing compliance with FIC Act requirements through customer due diligence and enhanced due diligence will safeguard and enhance their reputation. They will succeed at instilling trust in their stakeholders and further their growth objectives. FIC Act compliance presents an opportunity to create significant business value: It allows businesses to stand out by streamlining internal operations and improving organisational structures.

The implementation of robust client due diligence and anti-money laundering measures, protects businesses from legal risks, enhancing their long-term sustainability. These steps include the implementation of enhanced risk management and compliance programmes covering anti-money laundering (aml) policies, aml training, due diligence platforms with customer due diligence forms and politically exposed person lists.

Accountable institutions can play a vital role in preserving the integrity of South Africa’s financial system through compliance with the FIC Act regulations. EasyHQ supports a diverse range of businesses that want to make a positive difference to the local business environment and avoid the financial penalties of non-compliance.

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Navigate FIC Act compliance with EasyHQ: empower your business for growth

The failure to act on the FIC Act compliance can lead to significant penalties. With the amendments to the Financial Intelligence Centre Act, 2001 (Act No. 38 of 2001) (FICA) effective from 19 December 2022, the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) has implemented critical changes impacting Accountable Institutions (AIs) in South Africa. These changes aim to strengthen the financial system against money laundering, terrorist financing and proliferation financing, and it’s crucial for businesses to understand and comply with the amended legislation.

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Navigate FIC Act compliance with EasyHQ: empower your business for growth

A failure to act on the FIC Act compliance can lead to significant penalties. With the amendments to the Financial Intelligence Centre Act, 2001 (Act No. 38 of 2001) (FICA) effective from 19 December 2022, the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) has implemented critical changes impacting Accountable Institutions (AIs) in South Africa. These changes aim to strengthen the financial system against money laundering, terrorist financing and proliferation financing, and it’s crucial for businesses to understand and comply with the amended legislation.

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Assess your organisation today!

Understanding the FIC Act compliance obligations are crucial for your business.

The below guideline serves as your compass, outlining the key requirements to meet  the FIC Act compliance. From registration essentials to Customer Due Diligence (CDD) intricacies, explore the roadmap to safeguarding your business and ensuring adherence to FIC Act compliance and its Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Control Regulations.

1. Register with the FIC

If you’re an individual or a corporate entity identified as an Accountable Institution under the FIC Act, you must register. Do this with the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) on their goAML online platform. Visit the FIC’s official website and register within 90 days of starting a new business or being added to the list of Accountable Institutions.

2. Appoint an Anti-Money Laundering (AML) / Combatting the Financing of Terrorism (CFT) / Countering Proliferation Financing (CPF) Compliance Officer

If you’re part of an Accountable Institution’s senior management or board of directors, you must appoint a Compliance Officer (“S43CO”). This step ensures you follow the Financial Intelligence Centre Act (FIC Act). The appointed person should have the skills and rank needed for overseeing compliance effectively.

3. Develop a RMCP

Accountable Institutions need to adopt a risk-based approach. This includes creating controls in their Risk Management and Compliance Programme (RMCP). Regularly review and update this program to keep it effective.

4. Perform Customer Due Diligence ("CDD")

To reduce business risks, carry out detailed initial and ongoing customer checks. This means checking identities, learning about sectors or jobs, watching transactions, and using a risk rating system. If this risk check shows a need, you might have to do extra careful checks (Enhanced Due Diligence, “EDD”).  Additionally, this is especially true for important political figures, both local (Domestic Politically Exposed Persons, “DPEPs”) and foreign (Foreign Politically Exposed Persons, “FPEPs”), and Prominent Influential Persons (“PIPs”).

5. Screening of customers and employees

To avoid dealings with anyone on the FIC’s Targeted Financial Sanctions (“TFS”) list, Accountable Institutions must screen people. This includes initial and ongoing checks against the TFS list. It ensures no transactions, business relationships, or employment with listed individuals.

6. Submit reports to the FIC

Accountable Institutions must report any suspicious behavior or transactions to the FIC. This includes reporting cash transactions over R49,999.99 and international Electronic Fund Transfers above R19,999.99. They also need to file reports for unusual transactions or activities (STRs/SARs) and any terrorist property (TPRs).

7. Record Keeping

FICA requires Accountable Institutions to keep records of due diligence and transaction details for at least five years. This applies after a transaction concludes or a business relationship ends. Securely store these records, whether in paper or electronic form.

8. Ongoing Training

Accountable Institutions must regularly train employees on Anti-Money Laundering, Combating Terrorism Financing and Countering Proliferation Financing  (AML/CFT/CPF). Not doing so could lead to administrative sanctions.

Partner with EasyHQ today for:

Seamless Compliance with FIC Act Requirements

Effortlessly navigate FIC Act compliance; we handle complexity so you can focus on usual business activities.

Maximise Efficiency, Minimise Costs

Boost productivity and reduce expenditures with our streamlined, economical compliance solutions.

Enhanced Efficiency

 

Elevate your compliance efficiency using our automated solutions and expert team support.

Peace of Mind

Secure comprehensive compliance support for all FIC Act, Money Laundering, and Terrorist Financing requirements, minimizing your risk.