Anti Money Laundering Bill: Guyana tops list of 55 defaulting countries

Anti Money Laundering Bill…Guyana tops list of 55 defaulting countries

FEBRUARY 2, 2014 | BY  |  Guyana shares the worst rating in the world with Mozambique, as it relates to the list of countries under the Financial Action Taskforce (FATF) to be reviewed come February 10, when the body meets for its review group in Paris, France.

According to official FATF records seen by this publication, Guyana heads the list of the International Co-operation Review Group (ICRG).
That group includes countries such as Guyana, Mozambique, Cape Verde, Haiti, Cameroon, Aruba, Benin, Fiji and Zambia.  

Last November, the Caribbean Financial Action Taskforce (CFATF) issued a public statement with regard to two of its members which are also in the ICRG pool—Belize and Guyana.
“The publication of the CFATF statement on the FATF website does not constitute an official endorsement by the FATF…However, this public statement contains relevant information that countries and the private sector, as part of their implementation of the risk-based approach, should be aware of.”

The CFATF statement on Guyana had said that Guyana has made efforts to address its deficiencies, however, it has not taken sufficient steps towards reforms.

CFATF at the time was adamant that Guyana must pass the relevant legislation and implement all the outstanding issues within its Action Plan including; fully criminalizing money laundering and terrorist financing offences; addressing all the requirements on beneficial ownership; strengthening the requirements for suspicious transaction reporting, international co-operation, and the freezing and confiscation of terrorist assets, and fully implementing the UN conventions.

Guyana is yet to meet the legislative obligations namely the passage of the Anti Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism Amendment Bill.
The three political parties have been haggling for months on end over the Bill which has again been sent to a special select committee of Parliament.

According to the FATF document seen by this publication, as in every subsequent plenary meeting since October 2010, the ICRG should now decide whether it wishes to recommend that any of the jurisdictions in its pool be referred for a prima facie review to be discussed in February 2014.

“In practice this could be, for example, the top two jurisdictions ranked in one region or in each region, a certain number of jurisdictions ranked at the top of the entire group, or any particular jurisdiction where the ICRG agrees there are particular risks such that a prima facie review should proceed.”

Guyana is atop the list for the Americas Region and is on par with the African Region as it holds the same rating with Mozambique which heads the list for that region.

There exists currently, three methods by which a jurisdiction could enter the ICRG process: nomination; referral based on mutual evaluation results; and referral based on non-participation in an FATF-style regional body (FSRB) and non-publication of mutual evaluation reports.

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Comments

  • Cliff Thomas  On 02/03/2014 at 7:57 pm

    I hope Mr Granger read this. Unfortunately, he does not seem to have control of the people under him particularlly Mr Greenidge a so call Economist. He might as well give the Govt his vote so that they can have the majority to pass the Money Laundering and Terrorist bill urgently. I would not like to know that the country is Blacklisted for another 7 years by the CFATF and cause the poor Guyanese people to suffer. It is most annoying when these opposition parties cannot see further than their noses. The AFc party is no good for this country.

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