Money laundering is the process by which proceeds from a criminal activity are disguised to conceal their illicit origins in order to “legitimize” the ill-gotten gains or wealth. In Bangladesh, ‘Money Laundering’ is defined under Section 2(v) of the Money Laundering Prevention Act, 2012 [Act no 5 of 2012].
Money laundering is considered an offence, because it has potentially devastating economic, security, and social consequences. It is an avenue for drug dealers, smugglers, terrorists, illegal arms dealers, corrupt public officials, and others to operate and expand their criminal enterprises. It can also adversely affect collection of government revenue and deprives the government of due revenues.
The Government of Bangladesh promulgated the Money Laundering Prevention Act, 2002. Subsequently, in order to meet emerging international standards, subsequent amendments were made in 2008 and 2012. The main objective of the 2012 Act is to tackle the illegal money transfer to different countries. In order to exercise the powers, and perform the duties, vested in Bangladesh Bank, a separate unit named Bangladesh Financial Intelligence Unit (BFIU) has been established within Bangladesh Bank.
The Money Laundering Prevention Act, 2012 has elaborated the types of reporting agencies required to report suspected transactions to Bangladesh Bank. Reporting organizations coming within the purview of mandatory reporting include, among others, banks, financial institutions, insurers, money changers, any company or institution which remits or transfers money or money value, stock dealers and stock brokers, portfolio managers, security custodians, asset managers, non-profit organizations, non-government organizations, cooperatives, real estate companies, dealers in precious metals and stones, trust companies, lawyers and accountants.
Bangladesh bank has significant powers and responsibilities in restraining and preventing the offence of Money Laundering.
To access various BFIU Circulars, including Master Circulars, issued from time to time on prevention of money laundering, visit the Bangladesh Bank BFIU website www.bb.org.bd.
To Access Bangladesh Bank Guidelines on Prevention of Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing for NGO/NPO Sector November 2013, click here.