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Estonia: New Measures to Stop Money Laundering

(Nov. 2, 2007) On October 18, 2007, the Government of Estonia approved a set of measures aimed at preventing the financing of terrorist activities and submitted a legislative proposal on amending existing anti-money laundering legislation. Following the government order, the list of persons subject to financial monitoring was expanded, and it now includes all banks and providers of financial services, gaming operators, real estate brokers, pawnbrokers, auditors, and providers of bookkeeping and consulting services. In some cases, this requirement applies to public notaries, attorneys, bailiffs, and bankruptcy trustees. Under the new measures, all transactions in an amount exceeding US$30,000 must be reported. The identification of domestic borrowers of all types of loans is required. Cash purchases and other payments in an amount equal to US$15,000 or more also must be reported. Detailed requirements for the identification and registration of all other providers of financial services, specifically express loan lenders, are provided in government regulations. Similar measures will be introduced by all member states of the European Union by December 15, 2007. (New Law to Step Up Fight Against Money Laundering in Estonia, BALTIC NEWS SERVICE DAILY NEWS, Oct. 18, 2007, available at ISI Emerging Markets database.)