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Business in Poland

Law, tax and banking. Chapter 6

6.2.3. Legislation on Money Laundering

Polish legislation is in accordance with the European directive on money launder- ing and the recommendations from the OECD s special task force (FATF). Follow- ing the enactment of the Act on Countering the Introduction into Financial Circu- lation of Property Values Derived from Illegal or Undisclosed Sources in June 2001, all transactions exceeding EUR 10,000 (this can be under the form of a single transaction or as a series of linked transactions) have to be recorded in a Transaction Register and the ordering customer identified.

In addition, all cash transactions, transfers of ownership rights and assets as well as all claims-for-shares or claims-for-stock-swaps have to be reported and the customer identified, regardless of their size. This obligation also applies to any other suspicious transaction.

The Act applies to banks, brokerage houses, entities conducting gambling activi- ties, insurance companies, investment funds, leasing and factoring companies, the Polish Post office, real estate agents and public notaries. The Act also led to the creation of a specialised FIU (Financial Intelligence Unit), the General Inspec- torate of Financial Information.

6.2.4. Legal Issues Relating to Electronic/Internet Banking and electronic fund transfers.

Electronic signature issue is regulated by the Electronic Signature Act, which was approved on August 16, 2002, being in line with European law (Directive 1999/93/EC). According to the above-mentioned act, electronic signature is considered to be equal to a handwritten signature, provided that it is secured and verified through a qualified certificate.

Poland has also implemented the EU Cross-Border Payments Directive (1997/5/EC) and follows the EU Regulation on Low-Value Cross-border EUR Payments (EC Regulation 2560/2001).

6.3. Payment (and Collection) Instruments

The dominant cashless payment instruments used in Poland are credit trans- fers, an increasing number of which are processed electronically, particularly among corporate users. Card payments are also making substantial inroads, at the expense of cash payments, particularly among consumers and small busi- nesses for whom they are the second most popular payment instrument after paper-based credit transfers. Cheque usage, on the other hand, never took off in Poland and remains fairly marginal. Direct debits are available but are only slowly catching on. Like in all former communist economies, cash continues to play a significant role in the payment system, particularly in terms of retail transac- tions. Transfers in currencies other than PLN, excerpt for EUR payments exe- cuted through domestic Euro-clearing, are always considered international pay- ments.

Danske Bank / KPMG / Mazanti-Andersen, Korsø Jensen & Partnere January 2006


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