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Argentina Cracks Down on Crypto With Anti-Money Laundering Rules

Argentina is set to include cryptocurrency firms in their anti-money laundering regulations.

2 min read
Bitcoin in Argentina. Image: Shutterstock

Argentina is set to include cryptocurrency firms in its wider anti-money laundering (AML) regulatory regime, per the Buenos Aires Times

Argentina’s Unidad de Información Financiera (UIF) is the country’s competent authority when it comes to regulating money laundering risks, and it is now reportedly working on adding crypto firms to the list of entities subject to AML reporting requirements. 

According to a person “with direct knowledge of the matter,” the plan is for these new regulations to come into force this year. 

If these regulations are passed, it will significantly change the way cryptocurrency firms interact with regulators in Argentina. At the time of writing, these firms are reportedly only tasked with complying with 2019 tax reporting regulations. 

Crypto and money laundering regulations

This is, of course, not the first time a regulatory authority overseeing AML risks has taken aim at cryptocurrency firms. 

In the United Kingdom, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) made the same move in March 2021. 

Since then, crypto businesses—as defined by the FCA—have needed to file annual financial crime returns—returns which document, for example, the number of suspicious activity reports generated in the reporting period. 

“This policy statement proposes that additional firms and crypto asset businesses should be brought into scope of the return based on their business activities and the potential money laundering risks,” the FCA said at the time

More recently, the United States and the European Union have also taken some big regulatory swings at crypto. 

Earlier this month, President Biden signed a long-awaited crypto Executive Order—the Executive Order on Ensuring Responsible Development of Digital Assets. Part of this Executive Order aims to crack down on illicit finance within the crypto industry.

Across the pond, European Parliament lawmakers voted to approve the Markets in Crypto Assets Regulation legislative package. 

While not yet law, the MiCA package aims to coordinate the EU’s approach to regulating the crypto industry writ large.

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