Written Ministerial Statement
Operation of the UK’s Counter-Terrorist Asset Freezing Regime: 1 July to 30 September 2018
The Economic Secretary to the Treasury (John Glen): Under the Terrorist Asset-Freezing etc. Act 2010 (TAFA 2010), the Treasury is required to prepare a quarterly report regarding its exercise of the powers conferred on it by Part 1 of TAFA 2010. This written statement satisfies that requirement for the period 1 July to 30 September 2018.
This report also covers the UK’s implementation of the UN’s ISIL (Da’esh) and Al-Qaida asset freezing regime (ISIL-AQ), and the operation of the EU’s asset freezing regime under EU Regulation (EC) 2580/2001 concerning external terrorist threats to the EU (also referred to as the CP 931 regime).
Under the UN’s ISIL-AQ asset freezing regime, the UN has responsibility for designations and the Treasury, through the Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation (OFSI), has responsibility for licensing and compliance with the regime in the UK under the ISIL (Da’esh) and Al-Qaida (Asset-Freezing) Regulations 2011.
Under EU Regulation 2580/2001, the EU has responsibility for designations and OFSI has responsibility for licensing and compliance with the regime in the UK under Part 1 of TAFA 2010.
A new EU asset freezing regime under EU Regulation (2016/1686) was implemented on 22 September 2016. This permits the EU to make autonomous Al-Qaida and ISIL (Da’esh) listings.
The following tables set out the key asset-freezing activity in the UK during the quarter.
The recently passed Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Act will help ensure that UK counterterrorist sanctions powers remain a useful tool for law enforcement and intelligence agencies to consider utilising, while also meeting the UK’s international obligations.
Under the Act, a designation could be made where there are reasonable grounds to suspect that the person or group is or has been involved in a defined terrorist activity and that designation is appropriate. This approach is in line with the UK’s current approach under UN and EU sanctions and would be balanced by procedural protections such as the ability of designated persons to challenge the Government in court.
Sorry, but the tables on page 2 of the report don’t cut and paste real well…
Frozen funds: the ISIL-AQ regime had thre most frozen accounts (35) and funds (70,000 GBP), with the TAFA regime being a distant second (6 accounts for 9,000 GBP).
New designations: 4 for ISIL-AQ, 1 under EU Regulation 2016/1686
And there were 5 TAFA renewals in the quarter.
One interim basic needs licence was issued under the CT regimes during this quarter. Four General licences remained current during this quarter.3