30 June 2023
This is good news, but some things are still moving slowly which is logical, given the many stakeholders we have to deal with. Let me give a few examples.
Recently, among other things, we talked to Tax Justice and other NGOs about who we are and what we do, and how HQ members are working on preventing aggressive tax planning. We had a useful conversation that created mutual understanding.
With the Netherlands Bankers' Association, we discussed ways that allow trust offices and their clients easier access to a Dutch bank account. This will be followed up soon.
HQ also visited Brussels with a delegation of VNO-NCW's Financial Sector Committee to discuss ways in which we can make a joint effort to achieve good and workable European regulations.
In addition, the so-called gatekeeper consultation is ongoing, in which various industry associations in the financial sector are jointly looking for ways to make the fight against money laundering more efficient. In talks with the Functional Prosecutor's Office, journalists and the researchers working on the new National Risk Assessment (NRA), we explained what client acceptance under the Wtt involves. If you want to fight money laundering, it is better to focus on so-called illegal activities. More on that next time.
Trust offices recently received the 'Trust Office Sector Letter' from DNB. That letter shares several sector-wide observations. Interesting, as the basis is, among other things, the 'Integrity Risk Questionnaire' (also known as IRAP). HQ values the fact that DNB provides insight into the entire sector in this way. And with HQ members' data alongside it, we can provide insight into how we are doing. It was notable, however, that the letter of information provided its readers with 2021 data, just after the deadline for submitting the 2022 questionnaire had closed. As a result, a great deal of its contents is, unfortunately, out of date (e.g. the number of Russian clients).
During the yearly evaluation of the board, we re-assigned some of our tasks at hand. We also decided to create an extra seat in the board. We are happy to announce that Hanneke Olijslagers (JTC Institutional Services Netherlands) responded positively to our invitation to join the board. At the next AGM, this will obviously have to be ratified.
The current issue of our News Flash is published just after the launch of the our renewed website. The site offers you publications, guidelines and consultations, plus all information about the education programme also largely open to non-members which shows HQ is there for the whole sector. Messages will be available in both Dutch and English since many employees in the sector are non-native speakers. In any case, we will publish in two languages from now on. This also applies to our LinkedIn page (where a translation button is often available, of course).
Enjoy the summer!
On behalf of the board,