Dutch AMLD5 implementation: a bridge too far

On Tuesday December 3, 2019, the Dutch House of Representatives will discuss the Implementation Act implementing the European fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (AMLD5) into the Dutch anti-money laundering law (Wwft). Opinions diverge as to the question whether the law goes beyond the AMLD5-requirements or not.

The Dutch bitcoin industry has already outlined that the proposed law goes beyond what is required and points to stifled innovation and high supervisory costs that would be the consequence if the law is adopted. At the same time the Ministry of Finance re-iterates that a so-called "policy-free" implementation takes place, whereby only European rules are implemented.

As a follow-up to requests from the press, we hereby publish the analysis made for us by 't Hart advocaten on this matter (see the report – in Dutch). This will allow you to form your own opinion, using the primary source.

The conclusion is that the Dutch law goes beyond what the AMLD5 requires. A disguised licensing regime is put in place by copying clauses and elements of regular bank supervision into the anti-money laundering law. This is against the advice of the Council of State and does not find its basis in the AMLD5. As such, the Ministry of Finance is mispresenting the law towards the House of Representatives.

Legal analysis Hart Advocaten [Dutch]

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