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Thursday, February 15, 2024

FATF satisfied over Pakistan’s measures countering terror financing

Pakistan plenary satisfied the FATF team about the steps taken against terror financing and money laundering FATF has demanded that the prosecution system be made more effective and that those involved in financing terrorists should be punished with speedy penalties and fines.

The Financial Action Task has expressed satisfaction with Pakistan’s measures to get off the grey list. The Financial Action Task Force will decide Pakistan’s grey list status on Feb, 21.

In the recent meeting held at the Watch Dogs headquarter, the FATF has further asked Pakistan to make the prosecution system quick and terror financing persons should be trialed with speedy penalities.

It is noteworthy that Pakistan has taken serious measures in a bid to get off the grey list of the financial watchdog.  In the meeting, more than 800 representatives from 205 countries and jurisdictions around the world, the IMF, UN, World Bank and other organizations are participating in these meetings.

Read more: Pakistan’s concrete progress in implementation of FATF Action Plan

Pakistan needs 12 out of 39 votes to get off the list. Pakistan delegation led by the Federal Minister for Economic Affairs Hammad Azhar. Pakistan is expected to receive support from friend countries to get off the grey list. However, China, Turkey, and Malaysia have already announced their support for Pakistan.

What measures Pakistan has taken thus far

Pakistan has never shrugged off implementing the Action Plan proposed by the FATF. By December, Pakistan registered 827 cases have been registered against terror financing. Likewise, a significant increase of 667 percent increase has been made in arresting the terror-fiancing culprits. Moreover, the penalty rate to the culprits has also been increased by 403 percent.

In addition to it, the State bank of Pakistan has also successfully hampered the terror-financing and exploring those accounts used in terror financing. Moreover, it has adopted for the first time the blockchain technology to counter the illegal Hawala and Hundi system at the international level.

Read more: FATF: International Lobbying by India Might Retain Pakistan in Greylist

Pertaining to religious seminaries in Pakistan, Islamabad had also its provided report to the Financial Action Task Force, apprising the global watchdog of its compliance with 22 of the remaining points in its ambitious action plan. 113 madrassas across the country are now under the complete administrative control of the Federal government.

In the October 2019 plenary meeting, Pakistan was declared fully compliant on five measures which are (1) understanding risks of counter financing terrorism (CFT) by the financial sector (2) outreach sessions of Anti Money Laundering (AML) and CFT for the financial institutions (3) developing an integrated database at airports (4) mechanism to publicize designated persons and entities and (5) Terrorist Financing (TF) specific units and analysis done by Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU) and State Bank of Pakistan (SBP).

Thus, the formal announcement would be made by end of the plenary meeting on February 21.