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Pakistan to remain in FATF's grey list till Feb next year

Pakistan will remain in the Financial Action Task Force's (FATF) grey list till February 2020. The task force has directed Pakistan to take extra measures to completely eradicate terror financing and money laundering, as per reports on Wednesday.

The FATF, on Tuesday, reviewed the measures taken by Islamabad to control money laundering and terror financing. The Paris-based task force will take the final decision on Pakistan's position in February 2020.

The FATF has not made any formal announcements so far and is likely to announce the same on Friday, October 18 - the last day of FATF's ongoing session.

However, Pakistan's finance ministry spokesperson Omar Hameed Khan denied the reports, saying "it is not true and nothing before October 18 (can be confirmed)".

As per a report on Pakistani news site, Dawn News, the FATF has decided to give Pakistan a respite of four months to help the country implement the remaining recommendations of the task force. The daily also mentioned that China, Turkey and Malaysia also "appreciated" Pakistan's effort to this end. The three countries had earlier voted in favour of Pakistan that prevented it from making it to the black list.

At the Tuesday meeting of the FATF, Pakistan's Minister for Economic Affairs Hammad Azhar elaborated on the country's positive performance in 20 of the 27 parameters to check terror financing.

India, on the other hand, had recommended blacklisting Pakistan in the meeting. India said that Islamabad permitted Hafiz Saeed to withdraw funds from his frozen accounts.

The FATF meeting is being attended by representatives from 205 countries, the IMF, the UN, the World Bank and other organisations.

Pakistan was placed on the grey list in June last year. It was given a plan of action to complete by October 2019. If Pakistan continues to remain on the grey list, the country's financial position is only set to get more precarious.


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