IMF launches report on Anti-Money Laundering in the Nordic-Baltic region

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has published a report today on various aspects of anti-money laundering work in the Nordic-Baltic region. Norwegian authorities have participated since the project began in 2021.

Joint press release follows:

Together with IMF and partner countries in the Nordic-Baltic region, Norway is pleased to announce the launch of the IMF Regional Nordic-Baltic Technical Assistance Report on “Financial Flows Analysis, AML/CFT Supervision, and Financial Stability".

In a first-of-its-kind technical assistance project on Anti-Money Laundering, Norway partnered with the IMF and Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, and Sweden to continue enhancing the effectiveness of the AML/CFT frameworks at the country and regional level. The IMF used machine learning technology, on a country specific and regional level, to better understand cross-border money laundering risks, analyzed the sensitivity of AML/CFT supervisory tools to respond to these risks and developed recommendations to increase their effectiveness, and explored quantifying the impact of money laundering shocks on financial stability.

The Report notes that continuous efforts to strengthen AML/CFT frameworks is a clear priority in the Region and that coordinated action and innovative solutions are key in keeping pace with evolving financial integrity risks. More specifically, it recommends the ongoing monitoring of cross-border flows, with regional information exchange on macro-trends, and better identification of countries with potential money laundering risks to the Nordic Baltic Region. To bolster AML/CFT risk-based supervision, the Report calls for increased collection of cross-border data and complementary investments in advanced data analytic tools, as well as coordinated supervisory action for the highest risk banks. Finally, it recommends continued analysis of the impact of financial integrity breaches on financial stability to fortify the financial system against money laundering shocks.

Norway welcomes the analysis and outcome of the project and hopes that through publication of this report, the private sector and other countries can take key learnings from the experiences and good practices of the region.

Norway’s ongoing work is aligned with the recommendations of the IMF report with action already underway on several topics, notably: to make better use of available data, e.g., from the currency registry, to enhance risk-based supervision; integrate findings from financial flow analysis in supervisory processes; and further develop AML/CFT supervisory tools to increase effectiveness of supervision.