1 April 2017


Following the record breaking USD1.9 billion fine from the U.S. for money-laundering, HSBC still on probation is ramping up its compliance rules with immediate effect. Existing customers will be requested to provide supporting documents on the nature of business, ownership data, source of funds, jurisdiction of their operations etc. Information may also be shared with the relevant departments including the Joint Financial Intelligence Unit and bank accounts may be frozen should the account be used in excess of the amount approved by the bank during the bank interviewing process. For example, if on establishing the account it was declared that only a few transactions would go through the account and subsequently a lot more was processed this could lead to HSBC flagging the account, providing details to authorities as well as freezing the account until further information is provided to justify the transactions.

HSBC will also be reviewing accounts which was opened sometime ago when the general bank account opening procedure was more lax. It is also anticipated that establishing new accounts with the 150 year old bank will be more difficult in future and the process will be more vigorous especially for foreign passport holders.

Recommendation from a professional qualified intermediary would assist in opening the doors to bank account opening process. With more than 35 years of experience, ALCPA can provide clear guidelines and understanding to maximise the chances of bank opening. When the bank account is operational, we can act as communication channels with the banks to build long term relationship avoiding bank closure. ALCPA can also establish contingency plans to minimise the impact to business if the account is closed.

Should you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact us.


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