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FATF to decide on removing Pakistan from ‘grey list’

FATF plenary meeting was held in Berlin. Source: Twitter.

BERLIN: The Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) plenary meeting will conclude today amid high hopes that Pakistan will be moved from the ‘grey list’ by the financial watchdog.

Delegates representing 206 FATF members and observers attended the plenary session. The observers include the International Monetary Fund (IMF), United Nations, World Bank, and Egmont Group of Financial Intelligence Units.

A report noted that despite significant progress in many areas, effectiveness of the measures in place to fight money laundering, terrorist financing, and proliferation financing has not yet been achieved across all countries. The report commits FATF members to take “swift and decisive action” to improve the effectiveness of the measures in all FATF jurisdictions.

Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar is leading Pakistan’s delegation at the FATF Plenary Meeting to review progress under the 2018 and 2021 Action Plans. According to reports, Pakistan has high hopes to secure an ‘onsite visit’ which may lead the nation a step closer to getting out of the grey list.

Pakistan has launched a massive diplomatic effort to get off the FATF grey list, Pakistan required the votes of Turkey, China, and Malaysia to get off the list, and all three countrie assured authorities of full support for the purpose.

There are now bright chances that Pakistan may finally exit the FATF grey list after its current meeting Germany, the US, and other countries have also expressed partial support for Pakistan’s demand for exclusion from the FATF grey list.

The recent visits of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar to different countries are considered crucial for securing the support.

Pakistan has implemented almost all points of the FATF Action Plan, except for the penalties, and Pakistan has made prosecutions and all relevant legal amendments. Pakistan was placed on the FATF list of countries under increased monitoring in June 2018.

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