Date posted: 15/08/2018 3 min read

AML public awareness campaign

The Government has launched a campaign to raise public awareness about money laundering in New Zealand

In brief

  • New Zealand is a target for money launderers
  • Affected accounting practices are subject to the AML/CFT Act from 1 October 2018
  • Information packs designed to help accounting practices educate clients around the identity verification requirements

The 'Keep Our Money Clean' campaign, launched at a reception at the Beehive on Tuesday 24 July by Justice Minister Hon Andrew Little, uses print and digital advertising. It will run in four phases as new businesses and professions come under the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) Act 2009.

New Zealand has had AML/CFT laws operating since 2013. These laws applied to banks, casinos, financial institutions and some trust and company service providers. The Government has now extended these laws to include:

  • Lawyers, conveyancers, and trust and company service providers (from 1 July 2018)
  • Accountants and providers of accounting services (from 1 October 2018)
  • Real estate agents (from 1 January 2019)
  • Dealers in high value goods and the New Zealand Racing Board (from 1 August 2019)

Protecting New Zealand

For the second year in a row, New Zealand has claimed top spot in the World Bank Doing Business 2018 report for ease of doing business, ahead of 190 other countries. Plus, this is the third year in a row that New Zealand has been named the least corrupt of 179 countries in the Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index. This is all great, but its good reputation makes New Zealand a target for money launderers.

Businesses that are subject to the AML/CFT Act need to put systems and processes in place to prevent domestic and foreign criminals from trying to exploit them. Additionally, all businesses have reporting requirements that relate to particular transactions as well as suspicious activities.

"The Keep Our Money Clean campaign is about keeping our international corruption-free reputation and making sure Kiwi businesses are informed and prepared."
Andrew Little

The public message

The campaign also aims to inform the public of what they can expect when they engage a business that is subject to the AML/CFT Act, even if they have been a customer of the business for a long time. They may need to provide proof of identity (name and date of birth) and address to confirm that they are who they say they are and, in some cases, proof of their source of funds or wealth.

The information that customers will be asked to provide will vary depending on whether they are doing business as an individual or acting on behalf of an entity such as a company, partnership or trust.

The Government has prepared information packs for law practices, accounting practices and real estate agents so that customers can understand the AML requirements those businesses are required to uphold.

Keep our money clean

The digital campaign.

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What is money laundering?

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Information packs

Downloadable materials

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