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  • Pakistan to remain on FATF's grey list for now

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    FATF President Dr Marcus Player File Photo FATF President Dr Marcus Player

    The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) on Friday announced that Pakistan will continue to remain in its "increased monitoring list" — referred to more commonly as the grey list.

    FATF President Dr Marcus Player, addressing a webinar to announce the decisions taken by the plenary in its three-day meeting period, said that the forum has decided that Pakistan "needs to do more" when it comes to fulfilling the requirements set out by the task force.

    It was acknowledged that of the 27 conditions that were put forth to Pakistan, 21 have been fulfilled.

    To a question, Dr Player said that once the remaining six conditions are fulfilled, an "on site visit" will be approved under which a team from the FATF will visit the country for the next review.

    "Our discussions are confidential, and the members decided by consensus that Pakistan needs to complete these six items for an onsite visit to be granted.

    "As soon as the plenary decides that Pakistan has completed all the 27 items, then an onsite visit will be made. After that, it will be decided whether the country will be allowed to exit the grey list or not."

    He said that the new deadline for Pakistan to fulfil the remaining conditions is February 2021.

    The plenary was earlier scheduled in June but got postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

    In February 2020, the FATF plenary granted Pakistan a grace period of four months to complete its 27-point action plan against money-laundering and terror financing (ML&TF) after it noted that the country was compliant on 14 points.

    Pakistan was placed on the grey list in June 2018.

    According to a report, the authorities are hopeful of a positive outcome after the country enacted at least 15 pieces of legislation, many of them through a joint sitting of Parliament, to fulfil the requirements set by the international watchdog.

    They are confident that there are minimal chances of Islamabad being placed on the blacklist, the report said.

    “Pakistan’s case will be discussed on October 23, 2020 at FATF’s plenary meeting and our efforts will not go waste,” one top government official said on the condition of anonymity here on Wednesday.

    “We are expecting a positive nod from the FATF’s apex body,” he hoped.

    Pakistani authorities claimed that the Joint Working Group (JWG) of FATF had so far found the country compliant on a total 21 points out of the 27 identified in the prescribed action plan. It is yet to be seen how much of the progress will be acknowledged in the FATF plenary.

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