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15 July 2016

New KYC measures proposed for cross-border transactions

Content team

A 'know-your-customer' (KYC) database is among the recommendations made in a new report designed to alleviate costs and concerns affecting correspondent banking activities.

An important part of the global payment system, particularly for cross-border transactions, correspondent banking relationships allow banks to access financial services in different jurisdictions and facilitate cross-border payments for their customers.

This, in turn, supports international trade and promotes financial inclusion.

Banks have traditionally maintained extensive networks of correspondent connections, but there are "growing indications" that this could be changing, according to the Committee on Payments and Market Infrastructures (CPMI).

One of the concerns is that cross-border banking is suffering because of increasingly stringent anti-money laundering (AML) rules.

In an attempt to provide more clarity for lenders working to comply with AML regulations, the CPMI proposed creating KYC databases that would make customer information available to all banks.

One of the challenges of creating such a system would be ensuring that the information is sufficient to ensure lenders are in compliance with AML and terrorist financing rules.

The report also includes recommendations regarding information-sharing initiatives, payment messages and use of the Legal Entity Identifier in correspondent banking.

First issued for consultation in October 2015, the report went through a number of changes based on comments received and feedback from relevant stakeholders.

The CPMI, which is composed of central bankers from around the world, said the next step should be to have the proposed measures "further analysed by all relevant authorities and stakeholders in order to gauge the potential impact of each measure and to avoid unintended consequences".

It added: "The CPMI expects that the relevant stakeholders will initiate any necessary reviews or investigations in the light of the five recommendations as soon as possible."

Content team, Bureau van Dijk

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