Press information
Iekšlietu ministrs konferencē

On 7 February 2024, Minister of the Interior Rihards Kozlovskis participated in an international conference on the investigation and prosecution of money laundering organized by the Public Prosecutor’s Office of the Republic of Latvia in cooperation with the Embassies of the United States of America and the United Kingdom.

The conference brought together criminal justice practitioners and experts from Latvia and abroad to better understand new directions, trends, methodologies, approaches and challenges in preventing and combating money laundering.

In his opening remarks, the Minister of the Interior stressed that the overhaul of the Latvian financial sector was a matter of national reputation, self-respect and honour. It has enabled us to build a strong and resilient financial crime prevention system and for Latvia to become the first “Moneyval” Member State to have successfully implemented all the recommendations of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).

The Minister called for a reflection on the achievements of the last seven years and to recognise the benefits both nationally and internationally:

  • Latvia has made significant progress in investigating and prosecuting money laundering, ensuring prosecutions and confiscating and returning the proceeds of crime to victims.
  • Since 2018, there has been a steady increase in the number of criminal proceedings initiated for money laundering, in the number of cases tried and in the amount of funds confiscated.
  • At the same time, work needs to continue on building common understanding and cooperation between different institutions, including by making more active use of technological opportunities and innovations to prevent money laundering.

The Financial Sector Development Board has endorsed the National Strategy for Preventing and Combating Financial Crime. Its essence is to make the fight against money laundering crimes more and more effective, thereby promoting the rule of law, Latvia’s economic growth and investment environment, and overall strengthening Latvia’s internal and external security.

In addition, R. Kozlovskis stressed that the overhaul of the financial sector was crucial to maintaining Latvia’s international competitiveness and restoring investor confidence – the cornerstones of the country’s economic development and the well-being of its citizens. It is these same guiding principles – the well-being of the Latvian people and the growth of the country – that are central to the implementation of the reform decisions.

“The bar in the financial sector must be kept high, actions and decisions must be targeted precisely at the criminal world, while at the same time the attitude must be sympathetic and fair to honest entrepreneurs and individuals.” Kozlovskis pointed out.