Cash payments over 10,000 euros prohibited

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Cash payments of more than 10,000 euros will be banned in the European Union. Negotiators from the European Parliament and member states agreed on EU-wide regulations against money laundering on Thursday, intending to close loopholes in national laws. Dealers in luxury goods will also have to verify the identity of their customers and report suspicious transactions to the authorities.

Trade in luxury goods
The stricter rules apply to the trade in jewelry, luxury cars, private aircraft, and ships, among other things. According to the agreement, the new law will apply to financially strong soccer clubs such as FC Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund from 2029 on. With billions in investments from third countries, professional soccer is considered a potential gateway for money laundering in Europe.

Stricter monitoring of cryptocurrencies
The authorities are also to monitor cryptocurrencies and the banking transactions of the super-rich with assets of at least 50 million euros more closely. Owners of companies with a stake of at least a quarter must be registered across the EU. Among other things, this is intended to prevent Russian oligarchs from circumventing EU sanctions as a result of the attack on Ukraine.

Stricter anti-money laundering rules for cryptocurrencies, banks, oligarchs, and soccer clubs are “long overdue,” emphasized the chief negotiator in the European Parliament, Eero Heinäluoma. A uniform EU-wide framework would close national loopholes. “So far, member states have been losing billions of euros,” explained the Finnish Social Democrat, adding that the European Parliament and member states still have to approve the law formally. The new rules will be monitored by national authorities and coordinated by a new European Anti-Money Laundering Authority (Amla). The seat of Amla will be determined this year, and Vienna has also applied to host it.

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