Questions and Answers on the Bill against money laundering
Why are cash payments of € 3,000 or more prohibited?
- It will no longer be possible for professional or commercial traders to make transactions of € 3,000 or more in cash.
- We want to make money laundering as difficult as possible for criminals.
Does this mean that I will no longer be able to sell my moped in cash on sites like Marktplaats or eBay?
- No, the ban only applies to professional or commercial traders in goods and not to cash payments between private individuals.
Why € 3,000? Isn’t money laundering all about much larger sums of money? Won’t it mainly affect citizens?
- This new law makes it no longer possible for professional or commercial traders to pay for transactions of € 3,000 or more in cash.
- Money laundering involves money earned within the illegal circuit being brought into the legal circuit. Smaller amounts can also be laundered.
- For the ban (both amount and target group) the amount and target group used in neighbouring countries were taken into consideration in relation to the ‘waterbed effect’. Belgium and France also have a ban on cash payments; they use 3,000 and 1,000 euro as limits, respectively. In addition, a balance was sought between the effectiveness of the ban and the importance of accessible transactions in society.
How will this new rule prevent people/criminals from making cash payments in instalments?
- The bill states that breaking up payments ('smurfing') is not allowed.
- (The regulatory authority will monitor this and may issue fines for non-compliance with the ban.)
Is this the prelude to a cashless society?
- No, cash payments must remain possible.
- Some Dutch people still prefer cash. For example, because they are not digitally proficient, or find it easier to budget. But privacy considerations can also play a role in this.
- The trend has been for years that cash is being used less and less. The coronavirus is accelerating this development. Nevertheless, it is important that shops, restaurants, and cafés continue to accept cash as a means of payment.