Over the past few years, South African consumers (whether natural persons or entities) have become used to ”being fica-ed” when we enter into certain transactions. We are not alone in this: our financial intelligence laws were promulgated after South Africa became a member of the Financial Action Task Force, an intergovernmental organization established on the initiative of the G7 countries, to develop policies to combat money laundering and terrorist financing in member countries.
- where a company, trust or partnership is involved in a transaction, the accountable institution must ascertain the identity of the beneficial owner of the entity. In layman’s terms this means the identity of the person who ultimately ‘pushes the buttons’ or who ‘has the final say’ must be ascertained; and
- where an individual is a client and that individual is a “domestic prominent influential person” (or close relation or family member of such person) or a “foreign prominent public official” as these are defined in the Act, increased due diligence is required and senior management approval must be obtained before one may do business with this person.
Going forward, you can, therefore, expect changes when you are being fica-ed! Contact us on www.stbb.co.za should you require assistance or have questions