The Asia Pacific Group — that the FATF-styled regional figure — had discovered deficiencies in Pakistan’s anti-money laundering measures and combating terror financing frameworks in its own mutual evaluation report released a couple weeks ago.
“As a consequence of this MER carried from the Asia Pacific Group, Pakistan was under observation till October 2020,” said the ministry.
“If we don’t fully execute the APG’s recommendations from October next year, a brand new action plan of one to 3 years can be awarded to Pakistan,” said the minister at his opening remarks.
In February last year, the FATF had made a decision to place Pakistan to the set that was gray with effect in June 2018. Pakistan had been supplied a 27-point ambitious action plan that took it to ditch dread financing and monetary laundering, dismantle terrorists’ sanctuaries, and make banking and non-banking financial regulations more strict.
The APG’s MER was separate from the FATF’s 27-point plan, that is going to continue to keep the sword hanging around the nation for at least two to three years.
Even the FATF plenary met last month and gave Pakistan four months to execute the Action Plan after Islamabad was discovered compliant exclusively on five factors.
Pakistan’s failure to match FATF’s global standards is an issue that we take quite seriously,” FATF President Xiangmin Liu said while addressing a press conference in Paris last month.
The FATF Plenary will again examine Pakistan’s case in February next year.
To a query, Azhar said that it was not clear what is going to be the status of Pakistan in February 2020 if the FATF will take a decision on the basis of their MER.
Technically, Pakistan may well not be about the list at the period however, also the FATF plenary may also opt to delay the conclusion he added.
The mutual evaluation record discovered money laundering and terror financing as risky category areas in Pakistan.
The report revealed that of 40 recommendations of the FATF on controlling money laundering and combating terror financing, Pakistan was completely compliant on one single.
Because of such adverse consequences, that the APG placed Pakistan on its enhanced followup coverage record.
The ministry said that Pakistan will publish its initial report on the Joint Group of the FATF on December 2 and the final record will be shared around January 7.
On the basis of the final report, the Joint Group will offer its findings into the FATF that can take up Pakistan’s case again at mid of February.
Challenges that Pakistan is facing are greater than any other nation because of risk profile, which also resulted in setting thresholds up, said Azhar.
PML-N’s Dr Aisha Ghaus Pasha discovered that in case the FATF blacklisted Pakistan, the nation wouldn’t be able to issue global bonds.
Azhar downplayed the problem of blacklisting and said that Pakistan had twice been blacklisted in the past, initially in 2010.
He said within the last one year that the government has assembled an institutional mechanism to answer the challenges and also the intelligence agencies and the armed forces were also supporting the civilian authorities in this regard.
He said the nation’s charity laws have been also developed in mild together using all the FATF guidelines.
The director general said that cash couriers, investigation and prosecution of terror financing cases and also the confiscated assets of banned outfits have been a few outstanding areas by which the FATF declared Pakistan non-complaint.
“We have captured over 1,000 assets and are currently needed to investigate their resources and unearth beneficiaries,” said Siddique.