ANZ backs its anti-money laundering systems

  • By Andrew Starke

Australia and New Zealand Banking Group says it has systems in place to ensure it complies with anti-money laundering regulation after media reports suggested ANZ and Westpac might also have been targeted by criminal syndicates.

Responding to a piece in the Australian Financial Review, “Westpac, ANZ linked to money laundering rings in Commonwealth Bank case”, ANZ confirmed its compliance with anti-money laundering regulation.

“ANZ has systems in place to ensure it complies with anti-money laundering obligations including processes to monitor and report suspicious activity. We are also subject to continuous supervision from AUSTRAC and have no outstanding requirements,” the bank said in a statement.

“ANZ also complies with its obligation to conduct thorough ‘know your customer’ checks and to report all overseas funds transfers to AUSTRAC. ANZ is not aware of any regulatory investigations into ANZ’s AML compliance in Australia or overseas.

“AUSTRAC reviewed ANZ’s ATMs and Intelligent Deposit Machines in late 2015 and advised ANZ in February 2017 that it found no evidence of non-compliance with anti-money laundering regulation.”

ANZ completed a risk assessment prior to the introduction of Smart ATMs in 2013 which saw deposits limited to $5,000.

According to the AFR article, CBA chief executive Ian Narev raised comparisons with other banks on Sunday when he was quoted as saying: " You know any CEO of a major bank anywhere in the world who says they definitely don't have any problems with financial claims compliance would be a very bold CEO".

However, ANZ chief risk officer Nigel Williams said the bank had systems in place, including training for every staff member, to ensure it complied with anti-money laundering and counter terrorism financing obligations.

“We strongly support AUSTRAC’s role in disrupting serious financial crime and will continue to meet our obligations to monitor and report suspicious activity to AUSTRAC and the Australian Federal Police,” he said.