During the month of July, FI sent notification letters to SEB and Swedbank as part of the investigations into the banks’ management and control of money laundering risks in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.
Heads of the Nordic and Baltic financial supervisors met today in Stockholm. They agreed on measures to enhance the cooperation between the authorities with the aim of fighting money laundering and terrorist financing.
FI sends verification letters at an early stage of its investigation process, and the aim of this letter is to verify the facts of the case. Verification letters may at times also include preliminary assessments, but these assessments assume that the information FI received is correct and has been understood correctly.
Over the past few weeks, the media has reported on potentially major problems related to money laundering primarily in Swedbank’s Estonian operations. These reports have caused the bank’s share price to fall and had a negative impact on the bank’s reputation.
FI has received a copy of Swedbank’s external review that was initiated by reports in the media of suspected money laundering in the Baltics.
FI confirms that it received a report from Swedbank on 1 March regarding suspected money laundering.
SVT’s investigative journalism program Uppdrag Granskning has reported on certain transactions that occurred through Swedbank’s operations in the Baltics.
Due to the reports in the media regarding suspected money laundering in Swedbank’s Estonian operations, FI is issuing the following comments.
Eesti Finantsinspektioon (the Estonian FSA) and Finansinspektionen (the Swedish FSA) consider the reports regarding suspected money laundering that yesterday were made public yesterday on Swedish television (SVT) to be very serious. It is extremely important that the banks’ senior management and boards of directors view these matters seriously and take all necessary actions to ensure compliance with laws and regulations.
FI considers the disclosures regarding suspected money laundering presented by SVT’s program Uppdrag Granskning to be very serious. FI’s Director General Erik Thedéen has made the assessment in several interviews in conjunction with the events in Danske Bank that the possibility of Swedish banks being involved in money laundering cannot be ruled out entirely, but that the scope is most likely more narrow than what has been identified in Danske Bank.