The International Monetary Fund (IMF) warned of the increased risks of money laundering and terrorist financing in Malta due to the rapid development of cryptocurrency and blockchain companies. In addition to the blockchain industry, the financial and gaming industries, as well as the program the Malta’s government to obtain citizenship for investment activities, fell under the risky industries.
The IMF warned the Government of Malta about the need to take measures which will ensure that blockchain companies comply with the requirements of anti-money laundering legislation. The ministry’s commission noted that the Malta Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit had already taken a number of reasonable steps, but called for speeding up the actions and for eliminating loopholes in the supervisory and enforcement systems.
Also, the IMF representatives recommended that local authorities develop more effective sanctions for blockchain companies, as well as improve their understanding of possible risks and violations of regulatory requirements.
“The increasing number of financial organizations under supervision, the rapid development of new products, the development of the regulatory ecosystem and the deteriorating situation on the labor market put the Malta Financial Supervision Authority in a difficult situation” – the IMF representatives said.
Recall that at the end of June last year, the Parliament of Malta unanimously approved three bills on the regulation of the blockchain and cryptocurrency, developed as part of the task to become an “island of the blockchain.”