News Analysis |
Prime Minister Imran Khan, on Monday, chaired a meeting to prevent the money laundering from Pakistan. The high-level meeting took place in the Prime Minister Office (PMO)—where the participants mulled the ways to stop smuggling and transfer of money through illegal methods like Hawala and Hundi. In this regard, it was decided that existing laws need to be changed to effectively control the money laundering from Pakistan.
PM ordered to constitute a committee comprising of the representatives from Customs, State Bank, FBR, and FIA to devise a strategy to overcome the problem. The Attorney General of Pakistan would head the committee and present the report to the PM Khan in a week’s time. The Secretary Commerce and FBR gave a detailed briefing on losses—which affected the national economy due to money laundering.
PTI should stick to its election pledge to ensure full autonomy for NAB to investigate complex cases without coercion to eradicate corruption and money laundering to avoid the FATF’s blacklist.
Moreover, the interior ministry is also directed to formulate a comprehensive plan within a week and recommend the course of action to curb money laundering. Imran’s quest to revive Pakistan’s economy requires robust strategy and bold initiatives to eradicate the money laundering from the country. PTI has pledged in its 100-day plan to establish a special task force to recover looted national wealth parked in offshore tax havens.
“Recovered wealth will be used on poverty alleviation programs and for national debt reduction,” Khan promised. PM Khan in his maiden address to the Nation also promised to establish a task force to eradicate money laundering—which damages the economy. He also stressed to take the initiative to reform FIA to curb corruption and money laundering.
Pakistan has already been placed on the grey list by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) for failing to control terror financing and money laundering. Pakistani authorities acknowledged that unless it does not take the adequate measures to avert the crises, the country could face acute financial problems. Pakistan’s caretaker government had apprised the FATF members of its plans—which it would implement over the next 13-months to remove Pakistan’s name from grey-list.
The Attorney General of Pakistan would head the committee and present the report to the PM Khan in a week’s time. The Secretary Commerce and FBR gave a detailed briefing on losses—which affected the national economy due to money laundering.
Pakistan’s finance minister Asad Umar has acknowledged that lot needs to be done in this regard. While Addressing the Senate, the minister said that the government would review the action plan and address all 27-deficiencies pointed out by the FATF in the country’s anti-money laundering system.
While in opposition, Asad Umar had raised the issue number of times at different forums. He even accused the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) of facilitating money laundering and not taking adequate measures—as money continued flowing out of the country in PML-N’s tenure. The incumbent government looks serious to make immense and avert the financial crises and overcome the daunting challenges facing Pakistan’s beleaguered economy.
Based on the campaign trail promises, eradicating money laundering to overcome the twin-deficit and economic woes remains the top priority of the government. To combat the corrupt politician and cronies, FIA must be depoliticized and made a highly professional outfit. Similarly, PTI should stick to its election pledge to ensure full autonomy for NAB to investigate complex cases without coercion to eradicate corruption and money laundering to avoid the FATF’s blacklist.