A €10,000 cash transaction limit will be imposed on the purchase of real estate, vehicles, yachts, art, and precious metals after the government unveiled one its plans to combat money-laundering concerns in Malta during the budget speech.
At present, there is no limit in Malta when it comes to cash transactions, unlike most other EU member states. Flagged by Moneyval and the FIAU, the current system exposes major vulnerabilities in Malta’s fight against money-laundering.
Making large-scale payment for goods with cash remains challenging to trace, providing an ideal cover for the source of inexplicable quantities of money.
In fact, the number of suspicious transaction reports by the FIAU has increased year on year. In 2018, 1679 STRS were filed, with the FIAU overseeing 1,556 cases, 116% more than the previous year.
It is still unclear how the limit will be imposed.
The use of cash remains widely popular in Malta, with around 70% of households feeling there was no risk in cash payments.
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