The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) will decide whether to remove Pakistan from its ‘grey list’ or move it to its ‘blacklist’ in a virtual meeting of the global financial watchdog scheduled from 21 to 23 October.
According to details, the FATF plenary will make the decision based on Pakistan’s compliance with the 27-point action plan against money laundering and terror financing (ML&TF).
The FATF session was originally scheduled in June. However, it was postponed due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
Earlier this year in February, the FATF had urged Pakistan to complete the 27-point action plan by June. In case of failure, the FATF had warned to move Pakistan to its black list.
Moreover, it also gave a four-month grace (March-June) period to Pakistan to completely implement its 27-point ML&TF action plan, noting that the country had achieved only 14 targets.
In June, the Paris-based agency had decided to postpone all evaluations and follow-up deadlines as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, thus giving additional four months (July-October) to Pakistan to complete the MT&TF action plan.
By mid-September, the federal government had amended 15 laws to reconcile Pakistan’s legal system with international standards as required by the FATF.
Recently, the federal government furnished the compliance report on the 13 outstanding action points to FATF, which will be reviewed in the virtual plenary scheduled later this month.
In June 2018, the FATF had placed Pakistan on its grey list due to strategic shortcomings in its ML&TF regime after strong lobbying from India supported by the US, the UK, and the European Union (EU).
After Pakistan’s placement on FATF’s grey list, the Pakistani government had committed to a 27-point action plan to remove deficiencies from its ML&TF regime.