On Wednesday the Financial Services Commission (FSC) in Mauritius issued a notice to remind its regulated entities that they are required to report suspicious or potentially suspicious activity of the individuals or entities named in the Sanctions List set up by UNSC.
The FSC announcement is a fairly routine occurrence among financial regulators worldwide to adhere to international initiatives to combat money laundering and financing of terrorism. And it often demands that the licensees regularly verify whether they maintain any account or otherwise hold any fund, other financial assets, economic benefits and economic resources for the named individuals, entities and specified groups.
The circular letter listed the following names; any link with any of these should be immediately reported to the FSC.
– ISIL (Da’esh) & Al-Qaida Sanctions List
– 1718 Sanctions List- Democratic People’s Republic of Korea
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– 1988 Sanctions List
The sanctions lists mentioned above are regularly updated and can be consulted on the website of the United Nations.
FSC Mauritius made headlines last year after it revoked the licences of forex broker FXPrimus. The regulator decision was made after it found FxPrimus in breach of specific provisions provided under the Financial Services Act, as well as the requirements of prevention of money laundering and terrorist financing, which highlights the importance of today’s update.
Mauritius was for a long time a preferred destination for those interested in operating an offshore forex broker due to the softer financial requirements, which make it a better option than many European jurisdictions.
The benefits list includes limited set up costs, low capital requirements of about €17,000, and a favorable tax regime. But recently it has become increasingly difficult to apply and obtain a forex licence in Mauritius to the point that most providers have changed their destination to Belize, despite the higher capital requirements and the more expensive fees structure.