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April 25, 2019

Govt asked to launch diplomatic drive to get off FATF

National

April 25, 2019

ISLAMABAD: While getting in-camera technical briefings on compliance of 20 condition of Financial Action Task Force (FATF) placed on Pakistan, the members of National Assembly Standing Committee on Finance asked the PTI government to launch diplomatic campaign to get political support of three member countries of FATF for avoiding blacklist in upcoming review.

Pakistan should launch diplomatic efforts to come out from the chance of blacklist and Islamabad will have to muster up political support of three member countries of FATF for falling into any severe trap. “We should be compliant on technical grounds but launching of diplomatic campaign at this stage is dire need of this hour to avoid negative decision from FATF,” said one official who participated in the meeting.

The members were not fully satisfied with the preparedness but they recommended to the government to launch vigorous campaign at highest political and diplomatic fronts to get the desired results at FATF. However, the Chairman of the National Assembly Standing Committee on Finance Faiz Ullah told the media that they were satisfied with the briefing.

While showing satisfaction over the compliance report sent out to Financial Action Task Force (FATF) by Pakistani authorities, Chairman National Assembly Standing Committee on Finance Faiz Ullah hoped that Pakistan’s putting into grey list issue would be resolved soon.

Federal Secretary Finance Younas Dagha along with representatives of different departments granted in camera briefing to the members of National Assembly Standing Committee on Finance. The sources said that the members were satisfied with the briefing as the concerned officials told the parliamentarians that they submitted compliance report on 20 points for end May 2019 out of total 27 action plan.

“We made progress in all areas of 20 points,” said the official. Now the FATF will send back its response by April 30 after which Pakistan will be given chance to respond back before the upcoming Colombo meeting scheduled to be held from May 13 to 17, 2019.

Talking to reporters after chairing in camera briefing on FATF issues to members of National Assembly Standing Committee on Finance here on Wednesday, Faiz Ullah said that the legislation for amending Anti Money Laundering (AML) law was lying before the committee and it would be deliberated soon to pass the legislation. When asked to comment about compliance report on 20 points to satisfy the FATF meeting scheduled to be held at Colombo next month, he refused to share details but contended only as saying that they were satisfied with the sent report to FATF by Pakistani authorities.

To another question about Bilawal Bhutto Zardari’s statement related to FATF and proscribed outfits, the chairman NA committee said that Bilawal Bhutto represented the largest political party of the country and he should issue statements in responsible manner. He said that the government issued instructions not to harass anyone by using excuse of FATF. He said that the committee would consider amendments into AML soon.

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