The Monetary Authority of Macau and the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) signed a new memorandum of understanding in order to tighten up anti-money laundering measures and prevent illegal and terrorist financing activities in the world’s biggest gaming hub Macau.
On its website, PBOC said that the signing of the pact would make bilateral exchanges stronger including those on regulations related to anti-money laundering, onsite inspections and information exchange mechanisms. However, no specific measures were given.
To strengthen anti-money laundering measures, the PBOC also said that both sides would follow the recommendations from a global body fighting money laundering actives, namely the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).
The big gaming hub has long been considered one of the biggest money laundering black spots and a place where many unchecked capital flows were noticed going in and out of China via China UnionPay debit cards. A junket operator in Macau that was under a long police investigation has been recently accused of money laundering having transferred HK$1.8 billion ($232 million) via bank accounts in Hong Kong.
The Financial Intelligence Office in Macau has recently announced that there was a 14% increase year-on-year in reports related to suspicious activities in the city. In also said that the gaming department generated 1,370 reports which is a 75.6% increase compared to the same time last year.