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Jun 2020

Kuwait: Govt tightens anti-money laundering controls

Source: Middle East Insurance Review | Jul 2019

Kuwait’s Ministry of Commerce and Industry has issued a decree requiring companies and institutions operating in the insurance, gold, banking and real-estate sectors to appoint a Kuwaiti auditor from 1 January 2020 to combat money laundering.
The decision includes insurers and insurance brokers when entering life insurance contracts and other types of insurance related to investment as an insurer or broker of the insurance contract, the ministry said in a statement.
The decision also includes companies engaged in real estate and real-estate offices, gold, precious metals and precious stones and exchange companies.
The decree is expected to generate nearly 16,000 job opportunities for Kuwaiti jobseekers in the private sector, Al-Qabas reported.
The ministry recently referred two insurers to the Financial Investigation Unit, and requested the Central Bank of Kuwait to freeze all their assets until the completion of investigations, according to a report by Al-Rai quoting sources.
The sources pointed out the investigations centred on the safety of transactions of the insurers that were opened recently and concluded that there are serious concerns about the involvement of two companies in money laundering.
The sources said Minister Khalid Al-Roudhan has issued directives to all concerned departments to conduct a comprehensive study of the insurance sector, including developing and regulating this market, improving the efficiency of the domestic insurance business environment and ensuring the soundness of its financial and legal position. 
The ministry has requested information from all banks about the deposits of insurers, the sources said. The ministry is looking into the solvency of each licensed company in an effort to ensure the soundness of the financial position of each insurer.
In 2013, Kuwait’s parliament approved a law against money-laundering and terrorist financing. M 
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