Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has published its reasons for imposing a fine of £896,100 on the UK operations of Canara Bank, which is owned by the Indian state.

The FCA has also imposed a restriction on Canara accepting deposits from new customers for 147 days as a result of long-term serious anti-money laundering (AML) failings in its trade finance operations.

Trade finance focus

The FCA visited Canara in 2012 and 2013 as part of the authority’s Trade Finance Thematic Project, which assesses the adequacy of controls to contain the risks of money laundering, terrorist financing and sanctions breaches in banks’ trade finance operations.

The FCA found serious AML failings at Canara’s branches in London and Leicester. The authority found that the bank failed to show sufficient evidence that money laundering risks were being taken into account when processing trade finance transactions.

Failure to remedy

The authority also found no evidence that risk assessments or sanctions checks had been carried out for trade finance customers and only limited evidence that trade based money laundering risks were being considered or documented.

The FCA told Canara to remedy the findings, which the bank said it would do, but in April 2015, the authority visited Canara again.

Once more the FCA found failings, including a complete lack of AML or financial crime training since 2012.