Singapore considers tightening casino rules for customers

[SINGAPORE] Singapore is considering tightening the due diligence process for customers at its casinos in an effort to prevent money laundering and financing terrorism, according to the Casino Regulatory Authority (CRA).

The regulator earlier asked casino operators to set a threshold for the amount of cash transactions that are subject to due diligence at S$5,000, a CRA spokesperson said in an emailed response to Bloomberg queries. Singapore's current legislative thresholds at S$10,000 are higher than the global standard of US$3,000 set by global anti-money-laundering watchdog Financial Action Task Force, according to the CRA. (see amendment note)

"The Ministry of Home Affairs and CRA are reviewing the legislative thresholds in the Casino Control Act with a view to lowering these thresholds further to fully comply with the FATF Standards," the CRA said.

The FATF reported in November that the city-state had inadequate customer due diligence requirements for entities such as casinos and real estate agents. It said "moderate shortcomings are still affecting" the two sectors, without citing any companies.

Last year, the Singapore government agreed to extend licences to operate casinos held by Genting Singapore and Las Vegas Sands to 2030, in exchange for pledges to invest a combined S$9 billion in tourism projects.


Amendment note: An earlier version of this article stated that the regulator halved the legislative threshold to S$5,000 for cash transactions that are subject to regulatory review. Bloomberg has since corrected its article to clarify that Singapore's current legislative thresholds for casino clients' cash transactions stand at S$10,000, and that the regulator had asked operators to set a S$5,000 threshold for cash transactions subject to due diligence.

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