In a major setback to Pakistan, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has blacklisted the country by placing it in the enhanced expedited follow-up list following its failure to meet its parameters. The Asia Pacific Group (APG) of the international anti-money-laundering watchdog after gauging several shortfalls in Pakistan’s efforts to combat terrorism and money laundering blacklisted the country.
Pakistan failed to comply in 32 of 40 criteria set by the APG. Pakistan now has the challenge to avoid being blacklisted in FATF’s overall list that comes out in October. Earlier, Pakistan was marked in the grey list category by FATF. Pakistan has been temporarily blacklisted and FATF will review its performance and decide whether or not it should place it in the permanently blacklisted nations’ list.
APG took the decision during its meeting in Australia where it reviewed Pakistan’s performance in the financial and insurance service sectors. The evaluation was done in response to Pakistan’s report on the 27-point action plan submitted to the anti-money laundering organization.
FATF dismissed Pakistan’s contentions that it has improved on various parameters set by FATF. Meanwhile, Pakistan PM Imran Khan has accused India of lobbying for blacklisting. He said Pakistan has been putting in all efforts to ease tensions between the two countries and blamed India for exploiting the situation.
He said India had been lobbying for long to get Pakistan blacklisted by FATF and further accused New Delhi of creating a war-like situation to deviate attention from Jammu and Kashmir issue.
Earlier this year, FATF had warned Pakistan of dire consequences if it didn’t curb terror-financing. If FATF permanently blacklists Pakistan’s in October, it will be difficult for the country to get loans from international agencies or attract foreign investment.