UAE Removed, Kenya and Namibia Added to Global Money Laundering List

Sat Feb 24 2024
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PARIS, France: The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) Friday said it had removed the United Arab Emirates from its “grey list” of naions subject to increased monitoring, while Kenya and Namibia were added.

Countries on the list have “strategic deficiencies” in their efforts to combat money laundering and terrorist financing, but are working with the Global anti-money laundering watchdog, FATF to correct problems and are subject to increased monitoring.

FATF chief Raja Kumar said Kenya and Namibia suffered from weaknesses in their anti-money laundering systems and that action plans had been drawn up to remedy them.

In addition to the UAE, Barbados, Gibraltar and Uganda were removed from the gray list.

“All have taken substantial steps to improve AML-CFT security systems and addressed all items of their action plans,” Kumar said, referring to the fight against money laundering and terrorist financing.

UAE Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan welcomed the FATF’s decision, saying the changes would “strengthen the country’s leadership and competitiveness and strengthen its position globally as an economic, trade and investment hub”, according to the country’s official reports. agency, WAM.

In recent decades, the UAE has sought to use its location on the Arabian Gulf to become a financial, trade and travel hub connecting Asia and Europe. It was placed on the FATF gray list in 2022 due to concerns about murky financial transactions and the flow of Russian money into the country.

More than 200 countries and jurisdictions have committed to implementing the FATF recommendations.

The FATF also has a “blacklist” of countries that are considered high-risk jurisdictions.

Countries are urged to implement countermeasures against Iran and North Korea to protect against money laundering and terrorist financing and arms proliferation.

In the meantime, countries are being asked to exercise increased due diligence on Myanmar.

The FATF also reiterated its condemnation of Russia for its invasion of Ukraine two years ago.

It suspended Russia’s participation in the body last year, saying its members were taking proactive measures to protect the global financial system given Moscow’s growing financial ties to countries subject to FATF countermeasures.

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