The government has now implemented the amended Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Counter Financing of Terrorism (CFT) laws on the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) and all branches of commercial banks, as per the requirements of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) conditions, a Statutory Regulatory Order (SRO) issued by the Finance Division said on Wednesday.
Until now, AML/CFT regulations were only enforceable on the National Savings Scheme (NSS) centers and branches. However, the new regulations require the SBP and the commercial banks dealing with the NSS instruments to follow the same rules.
According to the SRO, “These regulations shall apply to the Central Directorate of National Savings (CDNS) and any other office of the issue dealing with the NSS as defined under regulations 2(1).”
A supervisory board was also formed under the Chairmanship of Additional Secretary Finance, including five members from SBP, Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP), Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU), DG FATF, and Joint Secretary Finance Division.
This board will establish the policies and procedures to ensure implementation of the AML/CFT laws and introduce a sanction regime to address the relevant violations by the CDNS.
It will also carry out necessary assessments concerning the AML/CFT regime, including regular and ad-hoc risk assessment through participation in any national risk assessment exercise. The board will also engage SBP’s approved external auditors to ensure compliance with the AML/CFT Act.