Around one-half per cent of respondents to a Thomson Reuters survey say they have significantly increased their compliance spending over the last two years, substantially as a result of tougher anti-money laundering and counter financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) requirements.

Some 52 per cent of respondents – all based in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region – said they expect a significant increase in compliance spending in the next two years.


Just under half of respondents to the survey for the Thomson Reuters report entitled Financial crime in MENA 2016: the need for forward planning identified themselves as senior management or senior compliance management working in several countries in the region, representing corporates and financial institutions.

Just over half of respondents belonged to organisations with more than 250 employees and 60 per cent belonged to companies that had a presence in two or more countries.

No confidence

Only seven per cent have complete confidence in their compliance policies, while 44 per cent fear over-reliance on technology.

Only 14 per cent of respondents are confident that technology is appropriately applied, while two thirds do not have a cyber security or technology policy in place.

In respect of sanctions policies, more than 40 per cent of respondents confirmed that they do not have a sanctions policy in place.

Financial crime in MENA 2016: the need for forward planning can be downloaded here.