Federal Minister for Industries and Production Muhammad Hammad Azhar -who led Pakistan’s delegation in the Financial Action Task Force (FATF)- said Pakistan has achieved impressive progress on its FATF action plan.

“FATF acknowledged that any black listing is off the table now,” he said in a tweet. “Within a year, we progressed from 5/27 to 21/27 completed items.”
He said FATF discussion remained focused on “how Pakistan can be facilitated for our upcoming 2nd evaluation (MER).”

He has congratulated Federal and Provincial Teams for working day and night even during the pandemic.

Finance Division issued following Press Release:

Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has reviewed Pakistan’s progress on FATF action plan in its Plenary meeting on 23rd October 2020, and has acknowledged that Pakistan has made progress across all action plan items and has now “largely addressed”21 of the 27 action items. The FATF has taken note of the significant progress made by Pakistan on a number of action plan items. Recognizing Pakistan’s sustained and irreversible efforts on implementation of FATF Action Plan, the FATF has upgraded overall 9 Action Plan items in its October 2020 Plenary. There is no item remaining in the incomplete” category. It is pertinent to mention here, prior to this plenary, Pakistan had addressed 14 out of 27 items and now FATF reviewed compliance of remaining 13 Action Plan Items during current plenary.

The action plan items that have been addressed by Pakistan include highly important areas of Financial Sector, illegal Hawala/Hundi, cross-border currency regime, international cooperation in terrorist financing cases, amendments to the Anti-Terrorism Act, implementation of targeted financial sanctions by financial institutions, applying sanctions for AML/CFT violations, and controlling facilities and services owned or controlled by designated persons and entities. This is indicative of the confidence of FATF on the efforts of Pakistani Government.

However, in view of the 6 items in “Partially Addressed” category, the plenary meeting decided to maintain status quo with respect to classification of Pakistan, for the time being. Considerable work has already been carried-out on these six items. Pakistan shall continue to make efforts to complete the remaining items in line with its strategy by February 2021. FATF will undertake the next review of Pakistan’s Progress in February 2021.

The Plenary meetings of FATF were held virtually from 18-23 October 2020, where its members discussed a variety of topics including Pakistan’s progress. The Pakistan team led by Mr. Muhammad Hammad Azhar, Federal Minister of Industries and Production, attended these virtual meetings. Pakistan presented its case in an effective manner and also reaffirmed its political commitment to continue with the efforts to complete the Action Plan.

Anas Mallick is an international journalist who has been working as a field reporter for 7+ years now. With a focus on diplomacy, militancy, and conflict, Mallick's expertise involve Pakistan, India, and Afghanistan. He tweets at @AnasMallick


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