LATVIA – Finance
According to the Ministry of Finance, Latvian law states that data on the actual owners or beneficial owners of legal persons is not only important in the context of preventing money laundering. The availability of data is equally important to ensure a safe and transparent business environment enabling entrepreneurs to verify business partners, as well as to enforce sanctions, as everyone is responsible for verifying partner PLG information in order to prevent transactions with a sanctioned person, either directly or indirectly.
The practice of the company registry does not change at the moment – companies have to disclose their PLG data in the same way as before; the availability of information on the actual owners of legal entities is currently ensured to the current extent, i.e. on the information website of the company registry, in the «system in system» service (API services), transferred to repeat users of the information on the company registry etc.
At one time, Latvia was based on the 4th Anti-Money Laundering Directive (or AML) as well as other international and national regulations, such as international sanctions, commercial law, disclosure reuse of information, personal data protection, etc. areas, when establishing the regulation of public access to PLG because at that time the 5th Directive had not yet been established.
Therefore, Latvia is now in a different legal situation than Luxembourg company registry and other European Union registries, which in their legal framework were completely based only on the 5th AML Directive for public access to beneficial ownership information. Therefore the impact of the EU court ruling on the regulation of Latvian regulations will be assessed.