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CBM Issues Rules for Cross-Border Money Transfers


Myo Sandar/Myanmar Business Today

In a move to counter illegal money transfers, the Central Bank of Myanmar on November 15 issued rules for cross-border remittances.

Under the directive, only local companies registered in accordance with the Myanmar Companies Act who have placed a certain amount of deposit can apply for a cross-border remittance license. They have to provide documents of fund deposits to prove they are taxed and legal.

In addition, the applicants need to provide documents proving the experience and skills of the executives of the cross-border remittance business as well as criminal clearance certificates for the owners, executives and shareholders with over 10 percent ownership of the company.

Moreover, employees of cross-border money transfer companies are required to attend training provided by the Financial Intelligence Unit, Myanmar Police Force, Special Intelligence Department and the Central Bank of Myanmar in accordance with anti-money laundering and anti-terrorism laws. Certificates of training completion must be submitted along with the license application.

Successful applicants will have to pay K1 million for a three-year cross border remittance license plus a K100,000 annual fee.

The maximum amount for a single transaction is $1,000 and the monthly transaction cap is set at $5,000 per person. Penalties for delaying or failing to transfer funds or deceiving clients can include a suspension or withdrawal of license.

The Central Bank has the authority to supervise license holders and force them to comply with the instructions, rules and regulations on cross-border money transfers.

Most migrant workers from Myanmar go to Thailand in search of work opportunities and their second most popular destination is Malaysia. Allowing authorized cross-border fund transfer services can benefit Myanmar migrant workers and overseas employment agencies. Hundi money transfer services will likely try for a license as well.