PARIS: In a major development, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), a global money-laundering and terrorism-financing watchdog, finally removed Pakistan from its grey list after four years.
Addressing the FATF plenary meeting in Paris, the global body’s President Raja Kumar announced that Pakistan’s name has been removed from the “grey list” as the country addressed all 34 points of the action plan.
Kumar, however, said that FATF will continue monitoring Pakistan. Lauding Pakistan, Kumar said the country has improved the system to prevent money laundering and terror financing.
“Pakistan can now better prevent money laundering and terrorist financing,” he added.
“Pakistan has strengthened the effectiveness of its AML/CFT regime and addressed technical deficiencies to meet the commitments of its action plans regarding strategic deficiencies that the FATF identified in June 2018 and June 2021, the latter of which was completed in advance of the deadlines, encompassing 34 action items in total,” he added.
Pakistan will continue to work with APG to further improve its AML/CFT system, Kumar added.
Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari took to Twitter to share the FATF’s decision about Pakistan’s exclusion from the FATF’s grey list.
“Pakistan has officially been removed from the FATF ‘grey list,” wrote the foreign minister on his Twitter handle. Bilawal also congratulated the nation on the decision.
Expressing his delight over the decision, Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif wrote: “Pakistan exiting the FATF grey list is a vindication of our determined and sustained efforts over the years.”
The prime minister congratulated the civil and military leadership as well as all institutions whose hard work led to Pakistan’s exclusion from the terrorism financing “grey list”.
Taking to Twitter, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar said that there are many people who consistently worked through last the four years to achieve success today.
“A few of them are here in Paris who were part of the final lap, but many others in a wide array of ministries/orgs/institutions are in Pakistan. I particularly want to congratulate them also,” she added.
Pakistan has managed to exit the FATF grey list, Khar said, adding that this has been a long and arduous journey that has only been made possible through strong political ownership across the political spectrum.
Finance Minister Ishaq Dar extended his heartiest congratulations to the nation on the removal of Pakistan’s name today from the FATF’s “grey list”.
Taking to his Twitter account, Dar wrote, “Efforts of the civil-military team under the leadership of PM @CMShehbaz in achieving this goal are highly commendable.”
What does it mean for Pakistan?
Having already suffered direct consequences and economic difficulties from its time on the grey list, the climactic graduation of Pakistan from the grey list will come no less than a breath of fresh air. It will be a major relief and accomplishment for Pakistan, and is expected to reap benefits in both, short and long run.
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