The Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation (OFSI) helps to ensure that financial sanctions are properly understood, implemented and enforced in the United Kingdom.
The Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation (OFSI), which is a part of HM Treasury, enables financial sanctions to make the fullest possible contribution to the UK’s foreign policy and national security goals. It also helps to maintain the integrity of, and confidence, in the UK financial services sector.
Who we are
The Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation (OFSI) was established in March 2016 and is part of HM Treasury. OFSI works to improve understanding, implementation and enforcement of financial sanctions in the United Kingdom.
OFSI aims to:
- raise awareness of and compliance with financial sanctions
- rapidly detect, respond to and address financial sanctions breaches
- provide a professional service to businesses and others affected by financial sanctions
In doing so, it helps to:
- ensure that financial sanctions make the fullest possible contribution to the UK’s foreign policy and national security goals
- maintain the integrity of, and confidence in, the UK financial services sector
We provide information and guidance to help you comply with financial sanctions, and issue licences that allow activities that are prohibited under financial sanctions. We also detect and investigate suspected breaches, taking action where necessary.
What are financial sanctions?
The most common types of financial sanctions are: * asset freezes, which prohibit you from: * dealing with a sanctioned person’s assets, including funds and property * making funds or goods available – directly or indirectly – to a sanctioned person * restrictions on access to financial services and markets
If you import or export goods, you need to consider if financial sanctions apply to you.
You may need a licence from OFSI as well as from the Export Control Organisation (ECO).
Why do we have financial sanctions?
Financial sanctions are imposed on individuals, organisations, businesses and countries to:
- coerce them into changing their actions;
- deny access to finance and other economic resources that would allow them to finance these actions;
- signal disapproval, stigmatise and potentially isolate them;
- send broader political messages nationally and internationally; and
- protect assets that have been misappropriated until they can be returned.
The UK implements all financial sanctions imposed by the United Nations and the European Union. It can also impose its own domestic financial sanctions in certain circumstances.
Do I need to comply with financial sanctions?
All UK and non-UK individuals, businesses and charities need to comply with financial sanctions if they are:
- carrying out activities within the UK’s territory
- established under UK law and operating overseas
All UK citizens need to comply with financial sanctions wherever they are in the world.
How do I find out who is subject to financial sanctions?
OFSI published a list of the individuals, organisations and businesses subject to financial sanctions – referred to as ‘designated persons’ or ‘designated entities’ – on its website.
To get list updates and other news, sign up to OFSI’s e-alerts.
It is important to note that an asset freeze and some financial services restrictions also apply to businesses and other organisations owned or controlled by a designated person. More information is available in OFSI’s guidance.