When you are doing your Client Due Diligence on a new client/customer, did you ever wonder where you could obtain a list of sanctioned or high-risk territories/jurisdictions?
Well, a reliable source is near at hand. The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) identifies jurisdictions with weak measures to combat money laundering and counter terrorist financing (AML/CFT) in two FATF public documents. These two reports identify:
- Serious strategic deficiencies (often referred to as the ‘black list’) and
- Less serious strategic deficiencies (often referred to as the ‘grey list’).
These reports are issued three times a year in February, June, and October.
The FATF’s process to publicly list countries with weak AML/CFT regimes has proven to be effective. For example, as of October 2018, the FATF had by then reviewed over 80 countries and publicly identified 68 of them. Of these 68, over 80% have since made the necessary reforms to address their AML/CFT weaknesses and have been removed from the process.
The first public document, the FATF’s Public Statement, identifies countries or jurisdictions with such serious strategic deficiencies that the FATF calls on its members and non-members to apply counter-measures. These include enhanced due diligence measures proportionate to the risks arising from the deficiencies associated with the country.
The statement “Improving Global AML/CFT Compliance: On-going process” identifies countries or jurisdictions with strategic weaknesses in their AML/CFT measures, but that have provided a high-level commitment to an action plan developed with the FATF. The FATF encourages its members to consider the strategic deficiencies identified for these jurisdictions.
If any country fails to make sufficient or timely progress, the FATF can decide to increase its pressure on the country to make meaningful progress by moving it to the Public Statement.
For more information about the FATF’s process to identify high-risk and non-cooperative jurisdictions and monitor their progress, click here.
Watch out for our 2021 update to the AML Policies & Procedures Manual coming soon.
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