Concerted national efforts’ behind FATF’s grey list decision: FM

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Minister for Foreign Affairs Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has termed Pakistan’s successful completion of the action plans laid out by the Financial Action Task Force the “result of concerted national efforts”, according to a statement issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on his behalf on Sunday.

The Foreign Office, quoting FM Bilawal, said: “I welcome FATF’s unanimous acknowledgment of completion by Pakistan of its 2018 and 2021 Action Plans. I would like to commend the hard work and dedicated efforts of Pakistan’s FATF team that have led to the successful completion of all technical requirements of both FATF Action Plans.”

The foreign minister said that this was “the result of concerted national efforts and complete harmony of interests by all stakeholders”.

Referring to the announcement by the FATF plenary of granting an on-site visit to Pakistan, he said that it is “a welcome development”.

“It reflects the remarkable progress made by Pakistan to enhance the effectiveness of its AML/CFT regime,” he said, in reference to the Anti-Money Laundering and Combating the Financing of Terrorism measures that the task force assesses.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif “appreciated the performance of Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar and the members of team of the Foreign Ministry” who represented Pakistan at the meeting.

Khar emphasised in a media briefing the day after FATF’s announcement that “this is going to be a cross-government effort”.

“I really want to talk about this as this is an effort [by] the state of Pakistan; governments will come and go but Pakistan’s consensus and efforts on this, I hope, will continue in stride,” she said.

The prime minister also appreciated the “core cell” established in the General Headquarters for its efforts in the completion of the anti-money laundering watchdog’s item list.

“I applaud the civil and military leadership that worked with the core cell,” he said.

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