UAE, UK launch new landmark partnership to counter illicit financial flows

Wam/Abu Dhabi
Filed on September 17, 2021

UAE Minister of State Ahmed Ali Al Sayegh. Photo: Wam

British Home Secretary Priti Patel. File photo

Both nations will work closely to tackle shared global challenges

The UK and UAE will ramp up the targeting of those financing terrorism and serious and organised crime gangs as part of a landmark new partnership. The new agreement was signed by UK Home Secretary Priti Patel and UAE Minister of State Ahmed Ali Al Sayegh on Friday.

The agreement of the UAE-UK Partnership to Tackle Illicit Financial Flows is part of the new, ambitious Partnership for the Future between the UK and the UAE as announced by His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces and the UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

This aims to ensure that the UAE and UK are able to work closely together to tackle shared global challenges, and promote prosperity and security for its citizens.

The partnership is a concrete articulation of the UK and UAE’s shared ambition to increase co-operation on illicit financial flows. It offers a robust platform to build a stronger and enduring partnership, advancing the priorities laid out in the UK’s Integrated Review and the UAE’s National Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Terrorist Financing Strategy.

The launch of the Partnership To Tackle Illicit Financial Flows will set to take place in London on Friday.

The co-chairs will discuss the aims of the partnership, and the development of a joint action plan to mitigate and address shared illicit finance risks, threats, and vulnerabilities, aiming to: Bolster law enforcement’s ability to identify and stop dirty money Target the flows of terror financing internationally.

"I will always take the strongest possible action to the keep the British people safe, and this new agreement bolsters both our countries efforts in going after the terrorists and serious and organised crime gangs that seek to do us harm," said British Home Secretary Priti Patel.

"The partnership will help to keep the public safe, protect our prosperity and bring dangerous criminals to justice," she added.

Minister of State Ahmed Ali Al Sayegh said: "The UAE stands with the UK in the global fight against illicit finance. We are committed to stamping out terrorist financing and serious and organised crime in all of its forms to protect the UAE and uphold the integrity of the international financial system."

The partnership will bolster both countries’ law enforcement agencies by enhancing intelligence sharing and joint operations between the UK and UAE against serious and organised crime networks.

"The partnership marks a key milestone in the close cooperation between the UAE and UK. Through the robust, collaborative structure of the partnership, the UAE is determined to advance our shared priorities and reinforce our efforts to keep our two nations safe, prosperous and secure," Al Sayegh said.

Lastly, the partnership will raise professional standards on anti-money laundering, with a particular focus on high-risk sectors such as dealers of precious metals and stones, and real-estate as well as emerging technologies such as crypto currencies.

Annual meeting will take place between the Home Secretary and the Minister of State to ensure progress on the partnership’s ambitious objectives.

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