Pakistan exits FATF’s grey list after 4 years

Pakistan FATF grey list

Paris: The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) on Friday removed Pakistan from its list of “increased monitoring”–also known as the “grey list”–after four years.

The FATF had included Pakistan in its increased monitoring list in June 2018 for deficiencies in Pakistan’s legal, financial, regulatory, investigations, prosecution, judicial and non-government sectors to fight money laundering and terror financing.

Since then, Pakistan had made serious attempts to escape the grey list of the watchdog. As a result of Pakistan’s serious efforts, the FATF in June this year announced that Pakistan had completed all 34 items on two separate plans as demanded by the global watchdog for combating money laundering and terror financing.

Then a team of the FATF visited Pakistan in September and concluded its findings that were to be discussed and reviewed in the next meeting of FATF, scheduled in Paris in October.

On Friday, FATF President Raja Kumar, after the first Plenary meeting under his presidency, announced that Pakistan was no longer subject to the FATF’s increased monitoring process.

In his statement, he said that the FATF welcomes Pakistan’s significant progress in improving its AML/CFT regime.

The watchdog noted that Pakistan has strengthened the effectiveness of its AML/CFT regime and addressed technical deficiencies to meet the commitments of its action plans regarding strategic deficiencies that the FATF had identified in June 2018 and June 2021.

“Pakistan is, therefore, no longer subject to the FATF’s increased monitoring process,” the statement said, adding that the country would continue to work with the Asia-Pacific Group to further improve its AML/CFT system.

“Vindication of our determined and sustained efforts”

Right after the announcement, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif congratulated Pakistan’s civil and military leadership as well as all institutions whose hard work led to Pakistan’s exit from the list.

“Pakistan exiting the FATF grey list is a vindication of our determined and sustained efforts over the years,” he said.

In a separate tweet, the Prime Minister particularly commended the role and efforts of Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto, Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa, and their teams and all political parties for putting up a united front to get Pakistan out of the grey list.

Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari also congratulated the nation on Pakistan’s removal from the infamous list.

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