Estonia is preparing to implement a new set of anti-money laundering rules that will tighten requirements for crypto companies operating under Estonian licenses, March 13 news. The changes come amid concerns that Russia could use cryptocurrencies to evade Western sanctions. Meanwhile, Estonia is conducting ongoing audits of anti-money laundering policies.
Next Tuesday, the country’s revised Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Law will come into force and introduce strict standards. Crypto firms will “bear the brunt” of Estonia’s crackdown on black money, Politico reports. This update will make Estonia’s regulatory regime for digital asset operating platforms stricter than the upcoming EU rules.
The framework, adopted in 2017, was deemed too lax, when it allowed hundreds of businesses, many located elsewhere, to be licensed in Estonia. In his speech, Finance Minister Keit Pentus-Rosimannus insisted that Estonia welcomes innovation but stressed that financial crime will not be tolerated and will insist on preventing money laundering as a priority.