Premier Dr. Natalio “Sowande” Wheatley introduced 16 legislative amendments 11 days before the scheduled Monday arrival of international assessors as part of the ongoing Fourth Round Caribbean Financial Action Task Force Mutual Evaluation. (Screenshot: HOA)

Eleven days before international assessors are scheduled to arrive as part of a key anti-money-laundering evaluation, Premier Dr. Natalio “Sowande” Wheatley introduced amendments to 16 financial services laws last Thursday in the House of Assembly.

The HOA is scheduled to reconvene today to give second and third readings to the bills, which leaders said were recommended by the Financial Services Commission.

If passed, the laws could help the territory avoid international censure by achieving higher marks in the ongoing Fourth Round Caribbean Financial Action Task Force Mutual Evaluation. They are coming just in time.

As a key part of the evaluation, International Monetary Fund assessors are scheduled to arrive Monday and stay through March 31 to review the territory’s legislative framework and measures to combat money laundering, terrorist financing and proliferation financing, BVI Finance announced recently.

Though the premier did not explain the 16 bills when he introduced them last Thursday, the January Speech from the Throne noted his government’s goal to pass several of them before the arrival of the IMF assessors this month.

Mutual Evaluation

The ongoing Mutual Evaluation is based on the Financial Action Task Force’s International Standards on Combating Money Laundering and the Financing of Terrorism and Proliferation.

If the VI performs poorly, it could risk being put on a “grey list” of jurisdictions facing enhanced monitoring, potentially affecting the VI’s global reputation.

The CFATF, a group of 25 Caribbean jurisdictions, is responsible for regionally implementing standards set by the FATF.

The VI was deemed “largely compliant” during the Third Round Mutual Evaluation that it underwent in 2008.

In the Fourth Round evaluation, the VI is being assessed on expanded and updated criteria following delays due to Hurricane Irma, FSC officials have said.


The amendments introduced on Friday include the following.

  • BVI Business Companies (Amendment) Act 2023
  • Anti-money Laundering (Amendment) Regulations 2023
  • Partnership (Amendment) Act 2023
  • Proceeds of Criminal Conduct (Amendment) Act 2023
  • Securities and Investment Business (Amendment) Act 2023
  • Financing and Money Services (Amendment) Act 2023
  • Drug Trafficking Offences (Amendment) Act 2023
  • Company Management (Amendment) Act 2023
  • Banks and Trust Companies (Amendment) Act 2023
  • Insurance (Amendment) Act 2023
  • Financial Services Commission (Amendment) Act 2023
  • Limited Partnership (Amendment) Act 2023
  • Elections (Amendment) Act 2023
  • Counter Terrorism (Amendment) Act 2023
  • Criminal Justice International Cooperation (Amendment) Act 2023
  • Financial Investigation Agency (Amendment) Act 2023