BVI Virtual Assets and Virtual Asset Providers. AML Regulations 2022

This notice serves to inform you of the recent amendments to the BVI AML Regulations and AML Code of Practice (collectively "the legislations"), which took effect on August 22nd, 2022, and August 29th, 2022, respectively. The primary objective of these revisions is to ensure the BVI's compliance with the evolving international standards established by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and update and clarify the current application of the existing legislation.

While there were many changes, we will focus on the expansion of the definition of 'relevant business' to include virtual asset services, and what this may mean for you.

The amended AML Regulations provided the following definitions:

A “virtual asset” means a digital representation of value that can be digitally traded or transferred, and can be used for payment or investment purposes, but does not include (a) digital representations of fiat currencies and other assets or matters specified by enactment or guidelines; or (b) a digital record of a credit against a financial institution of fiat currency, securities or other financial assets that can be transferred digitally.

A “virtual assets service” means the business of engaging, on behalf of another person, in any VASP activity or operation (as outlined in the definition of “VASP”), and includes (a) hosting wallets or maintaining custody or control over another person’s virtual asset, wallet or private key; (b) providing financial services relating to the issuance, offer or sale of a virtual asset; (c) providing kiosks (such as automatic teller machines, bitcoin teller machines or vending machines) for the purpose of facilitating virtual assets activities through electronic terminals to enable the owner or operator of the kiosk to actively facilitate the exchange of virtual assets for fiat currency or other virtual assets; or (d) engaging in any other activity that, by enactment or guidelines, constitute the carrying on of the business of providing virtual asset service or issuing virtual assets or being involved in virtual asset activity.

A “VASP” (virtual asset service provider) provides, as a business, one or more of the following activities or operations for or on behalf of another person (a)  exchange between virtual assets and fiat currencies; (b) exchange between one or more forms of virtual assets; (c) transfer of virtual assets, where the transfer relates to conducting a transaction on behalf of another person that moves a virtual asset from one virtual asset address or account to another; (d) safekeeping or administration of virtual assets or instruments enabling control over virtual assets; (e) participation in, and provision of, financial services related to an issuer’s offer or sale of a virtual asset; (f) perform such other activity or operation as may be specified by enactment.

As a relevant person, VASPS will be required to comply with the AML Regime, which includes (but is not limited to):

• Appointing a money laundering reporting officer (MLRO)
• Establishing and maintaining a compliance manual
• Complying with reporting requirements
• Staff training
• Complying with the travel rules for the transfer of virtual assets

The provisions related to virtual asset services will be effective on December 1st, 2022. These changes will require you to take immediate action if you own or are associated (as a director, shareholder, or beneficial owner) with a BVI entity under our administration, undertaking virtual asset projects or business.

If you are classified as a VASP you must inform the Licensee and take the necessary actions to comply with the new requirements by December 1st, 2022.


Contact Us

Thank you! Your submission has been received!

Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form

Scroll to top