The QFC Regulatory Authority has a statutory objective to minimise the extent to which firms can be used in connection with any type of financial crime. In keeping with its anti-money laundering (AML) and combating the financing of terrorism (CFT) objectives, the QFC Regulatory Authority maintains a dedicated unit for this purpose. The unit monitors risks arising from financial crime, sets the agenda for enhanced AML/CFT supervision of firms, and continues the process of effective implementation of the AML/CFT requirements.
AML/CFT regulatory framework
The Regulatory Authority has had an AML/CFT framework in place since the QFC’s inception in 2005. This framework was subsequently aligned to AML State Law No. (4) of 2010 on Combating Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing for financial institutions and Designated Non-Financial Businesses and Professions (DNFBPs). The Regulatory Authority then introduced the Anti-Money Laundering and Combating Terrorist Financing Rules 2010 (AML/CFTR) and the Anti-Money Laundering and Combating Terrorist Financing (General Insurance) Rules 2012 (AMLG) for general insurance firms, collectively referred to as the AML/CFT Rules. The rules were designed to be in accordance with the AML Law and aligned to global regulatory recommendations and standards.
New State Legislation
On 11 September 2019, the State of Qatar announced the adoption of Law No. (20) of 2019 on Anti-Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing (AML/CFT Law), which amends and replaces Law No. (4) of 2010 on Combating Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing. Further AML/CFT legislation was announced on 26 December 2019 through the adoption of the Implementing Regulations to the new AML/CFT Law, as well as the adoption of Law No. (27) of 2019 Promulgating the Law on Combating Terrorism (CT Law).
The AML/CFT Law No. (20) of 2019 defines money laundering offences, assigns duties and obligations to financial institutions and DNFBPs, and the duties of the National Anti-Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing Committee (NAMLC), which was founded in 2010. The law is based on the standards issued by the international AML/CFT policy-making body, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).
Firms should also be aware that the following Qatari Criminal Laws apply in the QFC:
Law No. (11) of 2004 (Penal Code of Qatar)
Law No. (6) 2020 amending Criminal Procedures Code Law No. (23) 2004
Note: The English translations of the above laws are unofficial translations of the official laws, which are in Arabic.
Updated Anti-Money Laundering and Combating Terrorist Financing Rules