Pakistan to stay on FATF’s grey list until June
The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) on Thursday decided to retain Pakistan on its “grey list” till June after concluding that Islamabad failed to address its strategically important deficiencies.
In October last year, the global terror financing watchdog had asked Pakistan, which has been on the FATF grey list over issues related to terror financing, to fully implement the 27 point action plan that the watchdog had drawn up for it by February 2021.
“To date, Pakistan has made progress across all action plan items and has now largely addressed 24 of the 27 action items. As all action plan deadlines have expired, the FATF strongly urges Pakistan to swiftly complete its full action plan before June 2021,” FATF said in a statement at the outcome of a plenary that began on February 22.
FATF further said Pakistan should continue to work on implementing the three remaining items in its action plan to address its strategically important deficiencies, including “demonstrating effective implementation of targeted financial sanctions against all 1267 and 1373 designated terrorists, specifically those acting for or on their behalf.”
The decision came on the final day of the FATF plenary, where governments around the world and partner organisations, including the UN, IMF and World Bank, discussed key money laundering and terrorist financing issues.
Pakistan’s continuation on the “grey” list means that it will not get any respite in trying to access finances in the form of investments and aid from various international bodies including International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Pakistan has been on the FATF’s grey list since June 2018 and the government was given a final warning in February 2020 to complete the 27 action points by June in the same year.
As things stand, Islamabad is finding it difficult to shield terror perpetrators and implement the FATF action plan at the same time.
A research paper by an Islamabad-based think tank recently revealed that Pakistan sustained a total of USD 38 billion in economic losses due to FATF’ decision to thrice place the country on its grey list since 2008.