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Parliament passes Financial Crimes Amendment Bill

Lilongwe 18 th April, 2023 - The Malawi Parliament has passed the Financial Crimes Amendment Bill 2023, representing a giant step towards Malawi’s compliance with international recommendations for preventing and combating money laundering, terrorist financing and other financial crimes.

The Bill seeks to address the deficiencies and limitations noted through the implementation of the Financial Crimes Act (FCA) since its enactment in 2017. The Bill also corrects grammatical, technical and typographical errors which have been noted in the use and application of the Act.

Among other things, the Bill defines the term “funds” to support the criminalization and measures against the financing of terrorism. Further, the Bill makes it an offense for a person, who knowingly or intentionally finances any other person to travel to a State, other than a person’s State of residence or nationality, for the purpose of planning, perpetrating, or participating in a terrorist act or providing or receiving of terrorist training.

The Financial Intelligence Authority is mandated by Section 3 (2) of the Financial Crimes Act to oversee the proper administration of the FCA and has been championing the amendment, in consultation and collaboration with other key stakeholders. The consulted stakeholders include the Reserve Bank of Malawi, the Malawi Revenue Authority, the Anti-Corruption Bureau, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Department of the Registrar General and the Ministry of Justice.