VILNIUS – Lithuania has applied to host the headquarters of the Anti-Money-Laundering Authority (AMLA) – the European Union's (EU) authority to counter money laundering and the financing of terrorism – in Vilnius, the Finance Ministry has announced.
Lithuania’s official application, signed by Finance Minister Gintare Skaiste, was submitted to the European Commission on Friday, the ministry said in a press release.
"Today, we have officially submitted Vilnius' application to the European Commission for the hosting of AMLA," the press release quoted Skaiste as saying.
The government approved the application on October 11, and Friday is the last day for its submission.
The countries' applications will be assessed by the European Commission, in parallel with discussions between the European Parliament and the EU Council on the final decision-making model.
The country that will host AMLA headquarters is expected to be announced in the coming months, and the new institution should start work in the first half of next year.
Skaiste believes that Vilnius is the best place for such an agency, as there are a lot of financial sector risk experts in Lithuania and it is also a convenient location.
According to the minister, Lithuania is also ready to offer premises that meet the highest quality standards and to take care of the social protection and integration of AMLA employees and their family members.