Pakistan stays in FATF’s terror ‘grey list’

Paris: Pakistan has been handed out an 8-point list by FATF that Imran Khan’s government will have to deliver on within the next four months. The Paris-based Financial Action Task Force, which has retained Pakistan on its ‘grey list’, has warned Islamabad that it could end up on the blacklist when it makes a fresh assessment in four months.

Pakistan has been on the FATF ‘grey list’ since June 2018 when the global anti-terror funding watchdog found deficiencies in Pakistan’s money laundering and anti-terror funding laws and their implementation. It had come up with a 27-point to-do list for Pakistan and given it 15 months to get working.

As Islamabad slipped on the deadlines, the FATF has more than once issued the threat of placing it in the black list if it did not act fast enough. This would entail harsher sanctions and intense scrutiny of all financial transactions. Currently, only Iran and North Korea are on the black list.

After the latest plenary meeting meeting, the 39-member watch dog found Pakistan failing to deliver on 13 of the 27 points in the action plan that it had pledged to implement. Except for Turkey, the 39-member multilateral watchdog expressed serious concerns at Pakistan’s missing another deadline to curb terror financing risks emanating from its territory.

As part of the eight points Imran Khan’s government has been asked to demonstrate that his security agencies detect and probe the “widest range” of terror financing and these investigations target designated individuals and terror groups.

Another pointer requires the Pakistan government to implement “targeted financial sanctions” against all UN designated terrorists and prohibiting their access to funding.