Lindner endorses Frankfurt as the ideal location for AMLA
On the occasion of the official submission of the application documents, German Finance Minister Christian Lindner vigorously promoted Frankfurt as the location for the planned EU Anti-Money Laundering Authority (AMLA) in front of representatives of the EU Parliament and financial attachés from numerous EU member states in Brussels. During an event organized by the Hessian State Representation, the minister emphasized the advantages of proximity to other EU supervisory authorities such as the ECB banking and EU insurance supervision, enabling effective collaboration and making it more challenging for criminals to operate.
Christian Lindner, German Finance Minister
We will provide the authority with everything it needs to be ready to go.
The application has the "full commitment" of the German government, including the promise of support to quickly launch the AMLA. "We will provide the authority with everything it needs to be ready to go," said Lindner. It is of great importance to not lose any more time. In this regard, Frankfurt has many advantages as the financial hub on the Main, offering the ecosystem and a comprehensive infrastructure.
Ten applicants for AMLA seat
The past Friday marked the end of the application deadline for the Anti-Money Laundering Authority's location. Ten EU countries have thrown their hat in the ring for their domestic financial centers: Frankfurt, Paris, Rome, Madrid, Dublin, Vilnius, Riga, and Vienna, as well as Luxembourg and Brussels, with the latter two considered more as tactical statements to improve their position in future negotiations.
The goal is to reach an agreement on all oustanding issues of the money laundering package in the remaining weeks of this year so that the seat can be discussed in early 2024 under the Belgian EU Council presidency. Since the EU Parliament is involved in the decision, a resolution must be made before March to realistically pass it during this legislative period.
Michael Boddenberg promotes Frankfurt's IT infrastructure
Lindner emphasized the German government's seriousness in combating money laundering and terrorist financing. Berlin plans to establish a central federal authority in Cologne in 2024: "Ten years ago, there were three anti-money laundering experts in the German Finance Ministry; today, there are more than a hundred."
Michael Boddenberg, Hessian Finance Minister
We not only offer short distances but also digital capacities.
While the budget plan has not yet been adopted, Finance Minister Lindner expressed confidence that the budget would reflect this increased prioritization of the issue. With this remark, Lindner countered reservations from other EU countries that accuse Germany of half-heartedness in combating money laundering, citing comparisons between nations.
Hessian Finance Minister Michael Boddenberg promoted Frankfurt's IT infrastructure. "We not only offer short distances but also digital capacities," noted Boddenberg, and pointed out that the city has the largest IT hub in Europe. He also underscored the excellence of Frankfurt's universities, particularly in meeting the demand for young talent.
Frankfurt's Messeturm, Turm 185, or Gateway Gardens?
Regina Schüller, who has an extensive experience in international institutions such as the ECB, EIOPA, and now the ISSB, shared that numerous financial experts from abroad find Frankfurt to be a comfortable environment. As an illustration, she cited a colleague who remarked: "I can drop off my children at kindergarten within 30 minutes and commute to the office afterward. In Rome, it takes an hour and a half for the same routine."
City Councilor Stephanie Wüst directed attention to the more than 50 international schools, a significant factor for EU officials moving to Frankfurt. She presented three buildings that could be a new home for the AMLA: the Messeturm, the Tower 185 located just a few meters away, or the Flow office building in Gateway Gardens, which is near the airport.