A team of Pakistani officials is in Beijing to lobby for the country’s exit from the grey list of the global money-laundering watchdog, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), amid the possibility that the move could entail voting. The FATF meetings begin on January 21.
Islamabad’s best-case scenario is that if it does not get certification that it has done enough to curb money-laundering and terror financing, then it manages a ‘largely-compliant’ rating on the basis of Islamabad’s implementation of 27 recommendations in its Action Plan and gets more time from the watchdog for full compliance.
'India is trying hard to move Pakistan to the ‘black list’ but expected support from China, Turkey and Malaysia would pour cold water on its efforts,' Pakistan government sources are quoted as saying. The Pakistani delegation is headed by the Minister for Economic Affairs Division,Mr. Hamad Azhar, and has representatives from the National Counter Terrorism Authority (Nacta), Ministry of External Affairs, State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) the country’s central bank, the customs department, the Pakistan Home Ministry and its Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU).
Pakistan had sent a 650-page review report to the FATF on January 8 in reply to 150 questions FATF had raised. Now the Pakistani delegation will present details about the steps taken from October 2019 to January 2020 keeping the recommendations of the FATF Action Plan in sight.
The FATF announced on October 18 last year that it would retain Pakistan on its ‘grey list’ for four months after which it might face action if it failed to make any significant progress on the inter-governmental body’s 27-point Action Plan. 'The Pakistani delegation will provide details to the FATF about the cases registered so far against the banned outfits, sentences given to members of proscribed organizations, registration process of seminaries, steps taken against money laundering and dismantling of terror finance systems.