Pakistan’s financial sector has been upgraded with a state-of-the-art anti-money laundering software solution called goAML, according to Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU).
The goAML application is a fully integrated software solution developed specifically for use by Financial Intelligence Units (FIU’s) and is one of UNODC’s strategic responses to financial crime, including money-laundering and terrorist financing.
The software provides financial intelligence to law enforcement agencies connecting them with corporations providing banking and financial services to the customers.
All relevant stakeholders have been registered on goAML and FMU has started disseminating its financial intelligence electronically through goAML recently. This has enabled FMU to automate the process of dissemination to its designated agencies and regulators.
Additionally, the stakeholders can also share and request information from FMU via goAML. It is an important step forward as all law enforcement agencies, regulators and FMU have been connected through goAML, which will result in effective and efficient coordination.
The reporting entities are directed to submit suspicious transaction reports (STRs) only through goAML, which is a state of the art all-encompassing AML suite for data collection, analysis, and dissemination.
A steep rise in the reporting of STRs was observed during the year 2019 which peaked at 20,030 versus 8,708 reported in 2018 and 5,548 STRs in 2017.
The highest number of STRs were reported from the banking sector followed by the exchange company sector. Top three STR reporting districts during the year 2019 were Lahore, Karachi and Islamabad while the top three STR reporting institutions were Habib Bank Limited, Link International Exchange Co. Ltd. and Telenor Microfinance Bank Ltd. respectively.
A significant increase in the reporting of STRs from SECP regulated entities was also witnessed during the last few months of 2019. The increased reporting from SECP regulated entities is due to their improved awareness and capacity building.
Financial Intelligence Units play a leading role in any anti-money laundering regime as they are generally responsible for receiving, processing and analyzing reports made by financial institutions or other entities according to the requirements of domestic anti-money laundering laws and regulations. Such reports and other information gathered by FIU’s often provide the basis for investigations into money laundering, terrorist financing, and other serious offenses.