FATF compliance report: US experts team due today to assist Pakistan

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ISLAMABAD: At a time when US experts team on FATF is due in Islamabad on Monday (today), Pakistani authorities are all set to submit their compliance report on progress of 27-point action plan to joint group of Financial Action Task Force (FATF) within envisaged deadline of August 13, 2019.

A high-powered US team will be visiting Islamabad this week with the purpose to provide technical support for complying with the FATF condition. This visit has been arranged in the aftermath of Prime Minster Imran Khan’s meeting with US President Donald Trump.

Washington’s help is considered as critical for getting desired results at two fronts including FATF and second on ensuring smooth sailing on reviews under the IMF programme. Pakistan is preparing its progress report for steps undertaken by Islamabad to deal with the assets of proscribed outfits in order to comply with the condition of FATF, said top official sources while talking to The News here on Sunday.

The official said they were confident that Islamabad was taking all required steps to come out from grey list. The US assistance provided on technical as well as on political front will also help Islamabad to come out from the risk of falling into blacklist at FATF forum.

Before submission of its compliance report to FATF’s Joint Group (JG), a US expert team will reach Islamabad on four-day visit for providing technical assistance as Prime Minister Imran Khan made special request to Washington high-ups in this regard.

“A high-level meeting last week was held with participation of both civilian and military leadership in which the participants reviewed progress report on 27-point action plan on which Islamabad will have to submit its report with the deadline of August 13, 2019. All the relevant departments are instructed to submit their reports to Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU) by August 11,” official sources confirmed to The News here on Sunday.

Pakistan has so far successfully foiled Indian attempts to slip Islamabad into blacklist under the FATF mechanism as New Delhi in last meeting tabled a resolution before they failed to muster up required consensus on their tabled resolution. Pakistan is making efforts to come out from grey list as Islamabad took steps to strengthen Anti-Money Laundering Law and Foreign Exchange Regulation Act (FERA) as first step was taken by clearing these two laws from National Assembly Standing Committee on Finance and Revenues.

The US team, according to the sources, will be holding meetings with senior dignitaries and heads of different departments, which were responsible for complying with FATF conditions.

Another senior official told this scribe that the US team would be visiting Islamabad this week for holding meeting with Ministry of Finance and other dignitaries, ministries and departments. “If they satisfy, US will extend its support to Pakistan at FATF review which is expected to take place by October 2019 for deciding the fate of the country,” concluded the official.

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