Definitions in Anti Money Laundering Law UAE

Definitions in Anti Money Laundering Law UAE

Definitions in Anti Money Laundering Law UAE

This article discusses Federal Decree by Law No 20 of 2018 on Anti-Money Laundering and Combating the Financing of Terrorism and Financing of Illegal Organizations in United Arab Emirates. Here we will see Definitions in Anti Money Laundering Law UAE in detail.

In application of the provisions of the present Decree-Law, the following terms and expressions shall have the following meanings assigned to them unless the context requires otherwise:

– State: United Arab Emirates

– Ministry: Ministry of Finance

– Minister: Minister of Finance

– CBUAE: Central Bank of the UAE

– Governor: Governor of Central Bank

– Committee: National Committee for Combating Money Laundering and the Financing of Terrorism and Illegal Organisations

– FIU: Financial Intelligence Unit

Supervisory Authority

Federal and local authorities which are entrusted by legislation to supervise financial institutions, designated non-financial businesses and professions and non-profit organisations or the competent authority in charge of approving the pursuit of an activity or a profession in case a supervisory authority is not assigned by legislations.

Law-enforcement Authorities

Federal and local authorities which are entrusted under applicable legislation to combat, search, investigate and collect evidences on the crimes including AML/CFT crimes and financing illegal organisations.

Relevant Authorities

The competent government authorities in the State entrusted with the implementation of any provision of this Decree Law.

Predicate Offence

Any act constituting an offense or misdemeanour under the applicable laws of the State whether this act is committed inside or outside the State when such act is punishable in both countries.

Money Laundering

Any of the acts mentioned in Clause (1) of Article (2) of the present Decree-Law.

Financing of Terrorism

Any of the acts mentioned in Articles (29, 30) of Federal Law no. (7) of 2014.

Illegal Organisations

Organisations whose establishment is criminalized or which exercise a criminalized activity.

Financing Illegal Organisations

Any physical or legal action aiming at providing funding to an illegal organisation, or any of its activities or its members.


Money laundering crime and related predicate offences, or financing of terrorism or illegal organisations.


Assets in whatever form, tangible or intangible, movable or immovable including national currency, foreign currencies, documents or notes evidencing the ownership of those assets or associated rights in any forms including electronic or digital forms or any interests, profits or income originating or earned from these assets.


Funds generated directly or indirectly from the commitment of any crime or felony including profits, privileges, and economic interests, or any similar funds converted wholly or partly into other funds.


Any means used or intended to be used to commit an offence or felony.

Suspicious Transactions

Transactions related to funds for which there are reasonable grounds to suspect that they are earned from any felony or misdemeanour or related to the financing of terrorism or of illegal organisations, whether committed or attempted.

Freezing or seizure

Temporary attachment over the moving, conversion, transfer, replacement or disposition of funds in any form, by an order issued by a competent authority.


Permanent expropriation of private funds or proceeds or instrumentalities by an injunction issued by a competent court.

Financial institutions

Anyone who conducts one or several of the activities or operations defined in the Implementing Regulation of the present Decree Law for the account of /or on behalf of a client.

Designated Nonfinancial Businesses and Professions

Anyone who conducts one or several of the commercial or professional activities defined in the Implementing Regulation of this Decree Law.

Non-Profit Organisations

Any organized group, of a continuing nature set for a temporary or permanent time period, comprising natural or legal persons or not for profit legal arrangements which are non-profit for the purpose of collecting, receiving or disbursing funds for charitable, religious, cultural, educational, social or fraternal purposes or any other types of good works.

Legal Arrangement

A relationship established by means of a contract between two or more parties which does not result in the creation of a legal personality such as trust funds or other similar arrangements.


Any person involved in or attempts to carry out any of the activities specified in the Implementing Regulations of this Decree Law with one of the financial institutions or designated nonfinancial businesses and professions.

Beneficial Owner

The natural person who owns or exercises effective ultimate control, directly or indirectly, over a client or the natural person on whose behalf a transaction is being conducted or, the natural person who exercises effective ultimate control over a legal person or legal arrangement


All disposal or use of Funds or proceeds including for example: deposits, withdrawals, conversion, sales, purchases, lending, swap, mortgage, and donation.


The competent authority in charge of supervising the register of commercial names for all types of establishments registered in the UAE.

Customer Due Diligence (CDD)

The process of identifying or verifying the information of a Client or Beneficial owner, whether a natural or legal person or a legal arrangement, and the nature of its activity and the purpose of the business relationship and the ownership structure and control over it for the purpose of this Decree-Law and its Implementing Regulation.

Controlled Delivery

The process by which a competent authority allows the entering or transferring of illegal or suspicious funds or crime revenues to and from the UAE for the purpose of investigating a crime or identifying the identity of its perpetrators.

Undercover Operation

The process of search and investigation conducted by one of the judicial impoundment officer by impersonating or playing a disguised or false role in order to obtain evidence or information related to the Crime.

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