The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) approved in recent days that Panama will be off the gray list, having impacted the turnover of economic activities such as banking, casinos and remittances in more than 50%. The Financial Action Task Force confirmed that Panama has the legal, regulatory and institutional framework defined in the action plan for the prevention of money laundering, financing of terrorism and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.
Financial Action Task Force – Gogetit Highlights
* Panama entered the gray list of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) in June 2014, after being wrongly assessed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in combating money laundering and terrorist financing.
* Despite this achievement, yet continuing pressure from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), which has called on Panama to reiterate its commitment to the automatic exchange of information, but with the model established, that is, at the request of countries and not as Panama seeks to, through bilateral agreements.
* This is the second time that Panama is on the gray list of FATF. The country had been included in 2000.
In recent days, it was held the plenary meeting of the Group of Financial Action Task Force (FATF), in Paris, France, where it was agreed to remove Panama from his gray non-cooperative countries list in the fight against money laundering, financing of terrorism and the financing of weapons of mass destruction, in response to efforts by the country to bring its standards to international requirements in this area.
This ceremony, attended by the President of the Republic, Juan Carlos Varela and Minister of Economy and Finance, Dulcidio De La Guardia, confirmed the decision of the multilateral agency saying that “With the new FATF action, the representative of the bank keeps hopes that the country can also leave the lists of Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) of the United States Department of the Treasury.
This great achievement for Panama involves, among other things, that the US banks are not required to use critical and special for its operations with Panama, which include, first, the correspondent operations criteria. This will be very positive for all those individuals and / or companies wishing to invest in Panama.
It is important to point out that Panama off the gray list of the Financial Action Task Force, was a process that took about a year and a half, and required the implementation of a concerted action plan with the FATF, which included the adoption of legislation to immobilize bearer shares Corporations offering certainty about who their beneficial owners, and new rules to prevent money laundering, terrorist financing and financing of weapons of mass destruction, which extends to new economic actors obliged to know customer and inform the authorities about suspicious transactions.
The fact that Panama was in the gray list of FATF, caused serious problems for both banks and commercial customers and individuals wishing to invest in Panama, not to mention the moral damage on the International Banking Center, which affected their competitiveness. However, by eliminating the bad image, the International Banking Center of Panama (CBI) reprises his prestige and appeal to international operators, both for banks and companies interested in establishing themselves in the country, in order to make internal operations, which contribute to economic development.
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