3 reviews to determine Pak’s place on FATF list

Islamabad: As Pakistan is trying hard to avoid being placed on the grey list of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), its performance and compliance report is being currently reviewed.

Three separate evaluations currently in progress will determine the possible exit of Pakistan from the grey list of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) by the mid of October, reported Dawn News.

A senior government official told Dawn that Asia-Pacific Group (APG) – – the regional affiliate of the FATF – – was currently conducting in Canberra (Australia) five-year mutual evaluation of Pakistan’s progress on upgrading its systems in all areas of financial and insurance services and sectors.

This round is not directly linked to Pakistan’s performance on its highest level commitments with the FATF on money laundering and terror-financing, but its assessment report can indirectly impact the country’s position to move out of the grey list. The assessments, represented from Pakistan by State Bank of Pakistan Governor Baqir Reza, will conclude on Aug 23.

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Pakistan has submitted its compliance report on 27-point action plan committed with the FATF with APG, which is reviewing its compliance on about seven areas mostly relating to financial and insurance services and facilities as part of an ongoing five-year review cycle. These areas cover safeguards against money laundering and terror financing by banned outfits and non-government entities through banking and non-banking jurisdictions, capital markets, corporate and non-corporate sectors like chartered accountancy, financial advisory services, cost and management accountancy firm, jewellers and similar related services, reported Dawn News.

This will be followed by another round of mutual evaluations by the APG starting September 5 in Bangkok that would become a key basis of Pakistan’s final review by the FATF at its plenary and working group meetings scheduled for Oct 13-18 in Paris.

The Paris plenary will also take up a separate assessment by the United States Treasury Department regarding Pakistan’s compliance with global commitments against money laundering and terror financing.

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The official said the US had taken a supportive stance towards Pakistan in recent months following engagements at the highest political and collaborative approach towards Afghan peace process. 

During a recent visit, a US delegation led by Ambassador Alice G. Wells, Acting Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs, had also advised Pakistan to show tangible actions against banned organisations and their leaderships to pacify more countries towards supporting its case to move out of the FATF grey list.

The official said Pakistan had made significant progress in this regard over the past one year. But the US, APG and FATF expects Pakistan to ensure these drafts attain the finality as laws, properly passed by the parliament, before the Oct 13-18 plenary.

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