Anti-money laundering efforts scoop excellence award

‘The Ministry of Justice is delighted to be named as the winner of the Excellence in Regulatory Systems category of the Deloitte IPANZ Public Sector Excellence Awards 2018,’ says Rajesh Chhana, Acting Chief Executive and Secretary for Justice.

The win was for implementing Phase 2 of the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing Terrorism (AML/CFT) regulatory system. The Ministry received this award together with the Department of Internal Affairs, Reserve Bank of New Zealand, Financial Markets Authority, New Zealand Customs and Inland Revenue Department.

Money laundering is the process that criminals use to “clean” money they’ve made from criminal activity to make it look like it has come from a legitimate source, meaning they can cover their tracks  and avoid detection.

‘The development and implementation of Phase 2 extended the system to approximately 6000 businesses in sectors such as legal and accounting service and real estate agents,’ says Rajesh.

‘Extending and strengthening the system is necessary to ensure we have a complete and robust system to combat money laundering and terrorist financing in New Zealand.’

The Awards judges said of the project: ‘This is very important work which appears to be achieving strong results. Over ten years, the estimated benefits include disrupting about $1.7 billion of illegal drugs and fraud crime and up to $5 billion in broader criminal activity.’

New Zealand implemented the initial AML/CFT regulatory system in 2013 and it is one of the country’s largest and most complex regulatory systems. The aim is to deter criminals laundering the proceeds of fraud, drugs, tax evasion and other crimes through legitimate New Zealand businesses.

The Deloitte IPANZ Public Sector Excellence Awards recognise and reward outstanding performances and achievements in the New Zealand public sector.

65 nominations were entered in the 2018 awards from 47 organisations including core government departments, Crown agencies, district health boards and local governments.

You can learn more about the other winners and finalists on the IPANZ website(external link).

Keep our money clean – public information campaign launched

Last week, Justice Minister Andrew Little launched the new Keep Our Money Clean campaign(external link) – a public information campaign to raise awareness about the problem of money laundering in New Zealand. This is the next phase of the work we are leading.

The campaign uses print and digital advertising. It will run in four phases as new business sectors come under the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism Act.

You can learn more on the new website: link).

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