This post is a courtesy from the Board to all Regulated Professional Firms (RPF). RPFs are reminded it is their responsibility to regularly check and stay up-to-date with the official Bermuda Government notices issued from the NAMLC office and the FSIU of the Ministry of Legal Affairs. 

This is to advise of recent amendments to Bermuda’s Sanctions Regime. The UK recently implemented:

  1. i) The Sanctions (Overseas Territories) (Amendment of Information Provisions) Order 2018 (“Information Provisions OT Order”) on 7 November, 2018, which automatically amended relevant OT Orders already in force in Bermuda; and
  2. ii) The Chemical Weapons (Sanctions) (Overseas Territories) Order 2018 (“Chemical Weapons Order”), which came into force in the UK and Bermuda on 9 January, 2019.
  1. Sanctions (Overseas Territories) (Amendment of Information Provisions) Order 2018

The Information Provisions OT Order was created in order to bring designated non-financial businesses and professions (DNFBPs) into scope for enforcement under certain Orders in Council that are in force in the overseas territories. The said order and the Explanatory Memorandum can be found on the UK Government’s legislation website here.

The amendments contained in the Information Provisions OT Order automatically apply to Bermuda as the amendments are in respect of specific OT Orders that are already in force in Bermuda. Industry is reminded that Bermuda amended the International Sanctions Regulations 2013 (“ISR”) on 17 September 2018 by way of the International Sanctions Amendment Regulations 2018, which brought DBFBPs into scope for enforcement under Bermuda’s sanctions regimes. The IRS was amended to ensure that DNFBPs were captured as the UK had not yet brought DNFBPs into scope in its overseas territories.  As noted above, the UK have now brought the Information Provisions OT Order into force, which means that the provisions set out in Regulation 2A of the ISR are no longer necessary. Therefore the INTERNATIONAL SANCTIONS AMENDMENT (NO. 2) REGULATIONS 2018 was made on 20 December, 2018 and came into force on 21 December 2018, in order to revoke Regulation 2A of the ISR. The International Sanctions Amendment (No. 2) Regulations 2018 was gazetted in the Official Gazette on 21 December 2018 and can be found here.

In light of the amendment you should ensure, where applicable, that the Information Provisions OT Order is read in conjunction with the OT Order. Please be reminded that OT Orders in force in Bermuda are set out in Schedule 1 of the ISR.

For the sake of clarity, the effect of the Information Provisions OT Order is to impose requirements on relevant financial institutions to provide information to the relevant authority of the relevant territory if they know or suspect that a customer is the subject of an asset freeze for the purposes of the relevant financial sanctions regime, or has committed certain offences under the relevant Order. These requirements are extended to specified businesses and professions, namely auditors, casinos, dealers in precious metals and stones, external accountants, independent legal professionals, real estate agents, tax advisors, and trust or company service providers.

As noted above, these requirements have been in force in Bermuda since 17 September, 2018.

  1. Chemical Weapons (Sanctions) (Overseas Territories) Order 2018

Please be advised that effective 9 January, 2018, the Chemical Weapons (Sanctions) (Overseas Territories) Order 2018 came into force. The said Order and the Explanatory Memorandum can be found on the UK Government’s legislation website here.

The Chemical Weapons Order was made by the UK Privy Council on 12 December, 2018 and was laid before the UK Parliament on 19 December, 2018, and gives effect to the sanctions regime created by the European Union in Council Decision (CFSP) 2018/1544 on 15th October 2018 concerning restrictive measures against the proliferation and use of chemical weapons; and in Council Regulation (EU) 2018/1542 of 15th October 2018 concerning restrictive measures against the proliferation and use of chemical weapons.

The Chemical Weapons Order was brought into force via Bermuda’s International Sanctions Regulations 2013, which were amended by the INTERNATIONAL SANCTIONS (CHEMICAL WEAPONS) AMENDMENT REGULATIONS 2018, which was gazetted in the Official Gazette on 21 December 2018, and came into force in Bermuda on 9 January 2019, and can be found here.