Repeat of Danske Bank AML issues ‘almost certain’ without EU changes

Author: Olly Jackson | Published: 19 Oct 2018

More consistent enforcement is required across the European Economic Area (EEA) if another Danske Bank scandal is to be avoided in the future.

The Danish bank is under investigation both in the US and Europe for allegedly funnelling $235 billion through its Estonian branch, a surprising fact given that Estonia only ranks behind Finland as having the lowest anti-money laundering (AML) risk in the world according to the Basel AML index. 

This year, the European Central Bank revoked the licence of Estonian bank Versobank for money laundering failings, eventually leading to the collapse of the bank. It also wound up Latvian lender ABLV after accusations of money laundering from the US Treasury, fuelling fears that AML is becoming a European endemic, particularly after Netherlands bank ING was fined €775 million ($888.5 million approximately) for compliance failures months ago. EU Justice Commissioner Vera Jourova went as far as calling the Danske...