In a major development, Pakistan is likely to exit the grey list of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) this week, it is being reported.
According to the details, a FATF Plenary meeting is taking place in Paris next week. It is the first FATF Plenary to be held under the two-year Singapore Presidency of T. Raja Kumar.
The plenary meeting will also focus on jurisdictions identified as presenting a risk to the international financial system with an update to public statements that identify jurisdictions as high risk or being subject to increased monitoring.
Therefore, it is hoped that Pakistan – which has been on the infamous grey list for four years – will exit the grey list as it has successfully complied with the 34-points action plan related to terror financing and money laundering.
Who deserves credit for Pakistan’s possible FATF exit?
Following a meeting in Paris in June 2018, the Paris-based organization formally included Pakistan on its “grey list” of countries for deficiencies in its legal, financial, regulatory, investigations, prosecution, judicial and non-government sectors to fight money laundering and combat terror financing considered serious threat to the global financial system.
Since then, Pakistan has been working hard to meet international standards in line with the 40 recommendations of the FATF. In June this year, FATF had found Pakistan “compliant or largely compliant” on all 34 points and had decided to field an onsite mission to verify it on the ground before formally announcing the country’s exit from the grey list that finally took place in August and September.
Interestingly, there has always been a political debate on which government should receive credit for Pakistan’s possible exit from FATF. The greater public opinion is that the previous government led by PTI deserves the credit because Imran Khan during his premiership, formed a FATF Coordination Committee, headed by Hammad Azhar, that made efforts to mitigate money laundering and terrorism financing.
There r expectations that Pakistan will exit the FATF grey list this week & shift to the white list. If this happens, it would b another accomplishment of former PM Imran Khan as deficiencies in the system to curb money laundering & terror financing were fixed during PTI's tenure pic.twitter.com/Ep5nzF2TnE
— Khurrum Sher Zaman 🇵🇰 (@KhurumSherZaman) October 17, 2022
On the other hand, the incumbent government refuses to give credit to PTI. Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, in his press conference in Washington, said that Pakistan worked hard to exit FATF’s grey list and the government is hopeful the country will come out of it.