Spain defends in the European Parliament Madrid's bid to become the seat of the EU's new anti-money laundering authority

News - 2024.1.30

30/01/2024. Spain defends in the European Parliament Madrid's bid to become the seat of the EU's new anti-money laundering authority. The Mi... The Minister for Economy, Trade and Enterprise, Carlos Cuerpo, in the European Parliament

Spain has defended in the European Parliament the city of Madrid's bid to become the seat of the new European Authority for countering money laundering and the financing of terrorism (AMLA).

The Minister for Economy, Trade and Enterprise, Carlos Cuerpo, and the Mayor of Madrid, José Luis Martínez-Almeida, have presented the strengths of the Spanish bid. The presentation, which was attended by the Regional Minister for Economy of the Community of Madrid, Rocío Albert López-Ibor, took place in the European Parliament before MEPs and representatives of the Council of the EU, and is part of the hearing process being held today, in which the rest of the countries bidding to host the headquarters of this new European institution have also participated.

Madrid is one of the nine cities aspiring to become the seat of AMLA, whose founding regulation was agreed at political level under the Spanish Presidency of the Council of the EU last December.

Spain has one of the most robust systems for countering money laundering and the financing of terrorism, internationally recognised and endorsed, with Sepblac, the financial intelligence unit and supervisor, being a benchmark in Europe. In addition, the capital city has major draws for hosting the AMLA headquarters due to its location, transport, communications and educational infrastructures and quality of life, as well as being one of the main European financial centres.

This was highlighted by the Minister for Economy, Trade and Enterprise in his speech, pointing out that "we are the best choice to host AMLA's headquarters. Spain is an international benchmark in the fight against money laundering and the financing of terrorism and Madrid is the ideal place for AMLA to execute its mission brilliantly. Our bid stands out in each and every criterion.

Carlos Cuerpo also highlighted the collaboration and coordination of the three administrations to promote Madrid's candidacy at national and international level: "Spain's candidacy is also a candidacy of unity. It is the result of months of institutional collaboration between the Ministry of Economy, the Community of Madrid and Madrid City Council".

Over the last year, the three administrations have held various events to promote the candidacy, both with civil society and with the main European representatives, as well as holding specific events to highlight the strengths of the candidacy.

Benchmark in the fight against money laundering and the financing of terrorism

Spain is a leader in the fight against money laundering and the financing of terrorism and has one of the best and most secure prevention systems. It ranks first in the European Union in the prevention of money laundering and is the only country globally to have obtained a rating of 'Substantial' or 'High' in 10 of the 11 indicators for assessing the effectiveness of its system by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), the international standard-setting body in this area.

Sepblac is a benchmark in Europe, reflecting the optimal institutional design and the broad scope of Spain's competences in this area.

On the other hand, Spain is one of only two EU countries to obtain the highest score for the implementation of preventive measures by the private sector, highlighting its high level of involvement in the prevention system.

Spain is also an example of coordination and cooperation, both with the public and private sector, working closely with anti-money laundering authorities in Europe and Latin America.

Non official translation