Outsourcing Control Function Officers In UAE - MLRO, CO, RO & FO

January 31, 2023by Mohammed Rahali

OUTSOURCING CONTROL FUNCTION OFFICERS IN UAE – MLRO, CO, RO & FO

With compliance requirements in the ADGM & DIFC increasing and indeed in the wider UAE, along with demands on in-house compliance teams, the risks of failing to meet the required standards have also increased. In response, Wincore provides strategic coordination services focused on providing companies in the UAE with Compliance Officer (CO), Money Laundering Reporting Officer (MLRO), Finance Officer (FO) & Risk Officer (RO).

In parallel to the financial licensing, and in view to satisfy the In-Principle approval of the Regulatory authority, through its strategic partnerships, Wincore is able to provide a full range of services:

  • Outsourced Compliance Officer (CO) / Risk Officer (RO) / Money Laundering Reporting Officer (MLRO)
  • Outsourced Accounting and Finance Officer (FO)
  • Governance, Risk & Compliance (GRC) assessments
  • Tax Planning, VAT Advisory, registration and implementation
  • CRS/FATCA assistance and implementation
  • Designated Non-Financial Businesses and Professions (DNFBP) assistance
  • Assistance in respect of policies, procedures and regulatory returns
  • Assurance subscription
  • Economic Substance Tests
  • Training

The Group of Associated Companies has listed advisors in DIFC. It has an immense experience in audit, finance, risk management, tax advisory and compliance functions in several UAE and Singapore based banks including Private Banks. It provides expertise in a variety of sectors. It manages 45+ firms in the DIFC / 10+ firms in ADGM.  It manages 25+ DNFBPs including real estate and jewelry businesses. It has 30+ staff in the team with varied experience from several fields and it manages around 300+ clients for varied services.

By outsourcing the control functions, your firm will be able to ensure independent control functions that have the right resources and capabilities to meet the challenges of an increasingly complicated market.

Outsourcing your firm’s control function by utilising a reliable outsourcing partner can help to significantly reduce costs by up to 70%, whilst at the same time significantly reducing the risk of non-compliance. Outsourcing these functions increase efficiency and operational effectiveness.

Our services are tailored to the needs of fund management, investment banks, brokerage firms, financial institutions, investment firms, other financial entities and Designated Non-Financial Businesses and Professions (DNFBPs), who are defined by FATF as:

  • Real estate agents
  • Dealer in precious metals or precious stones. A dealer in precious metals selling high-value items and accepting payments in cash.
  • Dealer in any saleable item of a price equal to or greater than USD 15,000 such as Jewelleries.
  • Lawyers, notaries, other independent legal professionals and accountants. This refers to sole practitioners, partners or employed professionals within professional firms. It is not meant to refer to internal professionals that are employees of other types of businesses, nor to professionals working for government agencies, who may already be subject to AML/CFT measures
  • Trust and Company Service Providers. This refers to all persons or businesses that are not covered elsewhere under these Recommendations, and which as a business, provide any of the following services to third parties:
    • acting as a formation agent of legal persons
    • acting as (or arranging for another person to act as) a director or secretary of a company, a partner of a partnership, or a similar position in relation to other legal persons
    • providing a registered office, business address or accommodation, correspondence or administrative address for a company, a partnership or any other legal person or arrangement;
    • acting as (or arranging for another person to act as) a trustee of an express trust or performing the equivalent function for another form of legal arrangement
    • acting as (or arranging for another person to act as) a nominee shareholder for another person

DNFBPs play a key role in protecting financial systems and economies from ML and TFS risks.

As gatekeepers, they are exposed to tremendous amounts of information, and act on behalf of their customers in many transactions. Some of these transactions are highly vulnerable to ML/TFS risks due to the nature of the product or service offered by DNFBPs. Some examples could be the following:

FATF recommendations set the main requirements and expectations from DNFBPs, under the UAE Federal Law, where DNFBPs are required to meet certain obligations. ADGM AML rules specify these obligations under FATF recommendations and UAE Federal Law.

All relevant persons who are conducting one or more of the activities classified as DNFBPs are required to be in compliance.

 

OUTSOURCING MONEY LAUNDERING REPORTING OFFICER (MLRO)

Money Laundering Reporting Officers (MLRO) are mandatory appointments required for obtaining financial licenses at the DIFC & ADGM. The role is usually filled out by a Senior Manager or Director and this control function officer has to be a UAE resident. The MLRO’s main duty is to provide support in countering money laundering and terrorist financing and in doing so; identify and report upon any possible money laundering activities.

The Outsourced Money Laundering Reporting Officer (MLRO) carries out the following functions at the financial entity:

    • Oversee the day-to-day operations for compliance at the firm with its AML policies, procedures, systems and controls;
    • Acts as the point of contact within the entity for competent UAE authorities and the DFSA regarding money laundering issues;
    • Completion of AML annual return & Central Bank biannual reports;
    • Maintaining systems & controls & reports;
    • AML and KYC checks;
    • Preparing ICAAP;
    • Reporting Suspicious Activity in accordance with Federal AML legislation;
    • Establishing and maintaining an appropriate money laundering training program and adequate awareness arrangements.

 

OUTSOURCING COMPLIANCE OFFICER (CO)

Compliance Officers (CO) are mandatory appointments required for obtaining financial licenses at the DIFC & ADGM. The role is usually filled out by a Senior Manager or Director and this control function officer has to be a UAE resident. The CO has responsibility for compliance matters in relation to the firm’s activities. The Outsourced Compliance Officer (CO) carries out the following functions at the financial entity:

    • Work with and report directly to the Senior Executive Officer, the board of directors, and offer advice and recommendations to the executives on all compliance functions  in accordance with ADGM/FSRA regulations or DIFC/DFSA regulations;
    • Check the business practices, operations, processes, and systems to ensure all compliance needs are taken care of;
    • Provide assistance with compliance reporting to meet all regulatory requirements;
    • Perform routine analysis on all compliance operations;
    • Oversee, organize, and present scheduled compliance reviews that portray all compliance risks with the help of continuous risk assessments;
    • Develop compliance manuals for all the organizational departments and employees;
    • Ensure all marketing materials are acceptable by regulators and within the business model;
    • Assist new firms in gaining an understanding of the compliance world;
    • Assist in establishing risk alerts for compliance issues to develop an early warning system;
    • Offer continuous compliance consulting and support with any regulatory issues.

HOW CAN WE HELP?

Wincore provides tailor-made solutions to fit every client’s unique requirements. Outsourcing your firm’s control functions will remove the burden of completing resource-heavy and time-consuming administrative requirements which can act as a barrier to your business. Not only will it assist in reducing costs and corporate complexity, it will also improve the compliance function and reduce regulatory risk to the firm. We offer competitive outsourcing packages for all companies, asset managers and banks seeking outsourcing solutions.

Please send us a mail at [email protected] or call us now on +971 4 221 2602 for assistance on these matters.

Wincore specializes in TaxEstateCorporate and Fiduciary matters. We provide pragmatic, flexible, and efficient solutions to individual entrepreneurs, startup businesses, foreign and local SMEs, multinationals, wealthy international families, HNWIs, and UHNWIs.

mm

Mohammed Rahali

Managing Partner

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