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Section 11(1) of the NPO Act requires all NPOs operating within the Territory to be registered with the Non-Profit Organisation Registration Board. This means that all NPOs must maintain an active registration at all times if they are in operation. Failure to do so is a criminal offence.
Details of the registration process and guidelines on the NPO Act can be obtained from:
Non-Profit Organisation Registration Board
Ministry of Health and Social Development
Road Town, Tortola VG1110
British Virgin Islands
Email: [email protected]
Section 18(1) of the NPO Act notes that the Agency is responsible for the supervision and monitoring of all NPOs operating in the Territory. To fulfil our mandate all NPOs are advised to contact the Agency and advise them of their operations. The Agency will undertake a risk assessment of the NPO and its operations and advise of next steps.
Our details are:
Supervision and Enforcement Unit
Email: [email protected]
NPOs are not required to appoint a Money Laundering Reporting Officer, however, given the importance of suspicious activity reporting, NPOs are required to appoint a Designated Person – who will be responsible for carrying out the reporting function, outlined within the AML Code.
The Agency has further provided guidance in the form of a Public Notice. The notice informs all NPOs that they are required to appoint a Designated Person who will be responsible for any AML/CFT matters within the organisation. The Designated Person is responsible for the filing of suspicious reports to the Agency. In addition to appointing a Designated Person all NPOs are required to inform the Agency of who that individual is.
Section 4A(6) of the AML Code provides guidance on reporting a suspicious activity or transaction to the Agency and clearly notes that once there is a suspicion the donation should be refused by the organisation. Internal reports should be reported to the Designated Person, who may or may not, based on their investigation, externalise the suspicion to the Agency.
Please note that the Agency has recently updated its suspicious activity report form.
Section 4A of the AML Code details the specific requirements for NPOs to establish internal control systems. This should include policies, processes and procedures for the prevention of money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism.
NPOs are thereby required to:
These requirements should be contained within a formal document, often referred to as a Compliance Manual. The Compliance Manual Checklist should be used as a guide when completing the manual. You can obtain a copy of the Checklist by emailing [email protected].
where a series of donations from a single donor appear to be linked to other donations from the same donor or other donors and cumulative the donations are in excess of $10,000 in any particular year. This obligation also applies to non-financial donations or assets which are of the same value. Equally, there may be instances which warrant enhanced due diligence, where there is a greater risk for money laundering or terrorist financing, such as engaging in a business transaction with a politically exposed person or an individual from a high-risk jurisdiction.
Section 47 – 49 of the AML Code offers clear guidance in relation to staff training. All members/volunteers are required to be trained at least annually in anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism. Such trainings should be proportionate to the responsibilities of the member/volunteer. Penalties are enforced if such requirements are not met.
Section 23(1) of the NPO Act notes the importance of maintaining records as well as the minimum retention period for retaining such records. Schedule 4 of the AML Code outlines the penalty for keeping insufficient records.
The Agency is committed to providing the necessary support and guidance to all NPOs, in order to ensure that the sector and the Territory are fully compliant with both regional and international AML/CFT standards. Therefore, all NPOs are encouraged to familiarise themselves with the NPO Act, the AML Code and the other AML/CFT laws which govern their operations within the Territory.