FROM THE OFFICE OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS
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The Department of the Treasury and the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) today announced that they have rescinded the designation of Ukraine as a primary money laundering concern pursuant to Section 311 of the USA PATRIOT Act. This announcement marks a recognition by the United States that the Ukraine has taken important steps to improve their anti-money laundering regime in response to consistent international vigilance and U.S. action under Section 311.
Section 311 of the USA PATRIOT Act gives the Secretary of the Treasury the authority to designate a foreign jurisdiction, a foreign financial institution, a type of account or a type of transaction to be a primary money laundering concern. Once designated, the Secretary can require U.S. financial institutions to take appropriate countermeasures against the concern. In December of 2002, Treasury made the first designations under Section 311, designating both Nauru and Ukraine as primary money laundering concerns.
In a notice that will be published in the Federal Register later this week, Treasury will announce the rescission of the designation of Ukraine as a primary money laundering concern as a result of the important steps they have taken to address deficiencies in their anti-money laundering regime. Ukraine made several amendments to its key anti-money laundering laws and has pledged to vigorously implement these changes.
Although Treasury has rescinded the designation under Section 311, U.S. financial institutions are reminded that the revocation of the designation does not affect existing guidance issued by FinCEN or obligations arising under the Bank Secrecy Act with respect to accounts and transactions involving Ukraine. Furthermore, Ukraine remains on the non-cooperative countries and territories list of the Financial Action Task Force.
The Treasury Department is encouraged by Ukraine’s efforts to improve their anti-money laundering regime and looks forward to effective enforcement of their new anti-money laundering laws.