News Desk |
The government of Pakistan’s accountability front has identified more than 5,000 fake accounts which were allegedly used for money laundering, Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Accountability Barrister Shahzad Akbar said on Monday in Islamabad, addressing a press conference.
Shahzad Akbar was accompanied by Senator Faisal Javed and Adviser to PM Iftikhar Durrani. The Special Assistant had held the press conference to brief the media on the progress made by the assets recovering unit, a joint platform of officials from the State Bank of Pakistan, the Federal Board of Revenue and other investigation agencies to bring back illegal money stashed overseas.
Akbar said that a list of names involved in these money laundering cases will be submitted to the Supreme Court soon.
Barrister Shahzad Akbar told the media that assets worth $5.3 billion were made in Dubai alone through alleged money laundering. “The amount translates into Rs 700 billion,” he said, adding that further details of all Iqama holders were being collected with the help of Dubai authorities as well as the local mechanism. He said that there are two types of iqamas (work permits) obtained by the people of Pakistan.
One is obtained by genuine workers, salesmen, legal advisers, and others, who send the bulk of their money back to Pakistan and it is added to our economy. He said that Rs7.4 billion was recorded as remittances in the first quarter of the PTI government, which is 20 to 25% higher than the previous quarter.
The second type of iqama is obtained by ministers, advisers, and even prime ministers, and is used to hide stolen money, said Akbar. Once they obtain an iqama, their status changes in the banking system, he explained. The accounts and foreign properties were found during the investigations into the ongoing cases.
The Special Assistant had held the press conference to brief the media on the progress made by the assets recovering unit, a joint platform of officials from the State Bank of Pakistan.
The details of each and every case will be shared with media when corruption references will be filed properly, Iftikhar Durrani added. “$1.5bn properties bought in Dubai are a small estimated faction of the ill-gotten money [laundered abroad],” said Akbar.
Akbar said that a list of names involved in these money laundering cases will be submitted to the Supreme Court soon, the court will decide whether to make it public or not.
He said the government has a mutual legal assistance agreement with Dubai and is hoping to get a list of iqama holders from it. In Dubai, you have to declare the money you have when you arrive in the country, he explained, adding that they want to know how many Pakistanis are on that declaration list along with their details.