Electronic money: the French Government strengthens financial intermediaries’ obligations
On November 10, 2016, the French Government issued a decree against the financing of terrorism which contains various measures addressing anonymous electronic money [source in French]. This new regulatory measure applies to electronic money issuers as well as their distributors, credit institutions, finance companies, consumers, and to any person who physically transfers money from a certain amount.
In addition to reinforcing the powers of the Ministry of Economic and Financial Affairs agency against money-laundering (TRACFIN) -which will now have access to the wanted person files for the needs of criminal investigations-, the decree removed the duty of care of the financial intermediaries in the absence of any particular suspicion of money laundering and under strict conditions pertaining to electronic money:
- Money must only be issued for the acquisition of goods and services.
- The maximum monetary value stored must not exceed EUR 250.
- These funds must only be used for payments on the national territory.
- The electronic money device may neither be reloaded through cash nor through electronic money when the initial owner of such money cannot be identified.