Pakistan government to take strict action over FATF: Report

Pakistan government to take strict action over FATF: Report

ISLAMABAD: In order to meet the condition of Financial Action Task Force (FATF) regarding the control of terror financing, the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has decided to intensify its efforts against over 2,600 individuals/assets of banned organisations.

The individuals and assets targeted by FBR so far were linked with various banned organizations, including Da’esh (ISIS), AL-Qaida (AQ), Jamatud Dawa (JuD), Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation (FIF), Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM), Haqqani Network (HQN) and people affiliated with the Taliban.

According to official documents, FBR would be ensuring effective implementation of Targeted Financial Sanctions (TFS) against the assets of 1,267 and 1,373 designated people and entities associated with banned organisations.

To bridge the gaps identified by Asia Pacific Joint Group (APJG) in Pakistan’s performance towards 40 recommendations in October 2019, FBR was also taking steps to meet the assigned targets before the next review in Feb 2020.

Under the target of counter-terror financing, FBR was presently identifying people and entities acting on behalf of or at the direction of designated entities. It was also tracing and freezing their assets (moveable and immoveable) besides preventing the raising and moving of funds as well as any activities designed to evade effective implementation.

Moreover, the FBR-Inland Revenue, customs and excise departments were also identifying properties of listed terrorist entities and individuals while applying seizure to all such properties.

As per the documents, FBR has so far identified properties of 84 proscribed people from their tax declarations. It has also forwarded the information to the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) and Ministry of Interior (Mol) through Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU) for further action under Anti Money Laundering Act (AML Act), 2010.

As the next progress report on Mutual Evaluation Report (MER) of FATF’s Asia Pacific Group was due in the month of February 2020, FBR-IR was assigned various tasks including the monitoring of terror financing, cash couriers, non-profit organizations (NPOs), supervision and regulation of real estate agents and people dealing in gems, jewellery and other precious metals.

To bridge the gaps before the release of next MER by the group, a separate FATF cell at FBR was working on the assigned targets. The sub-groups/cells of concerned departments were also reporting to the National FATF Coordination Committee, set up by Prime Minister Imran Khan to ensure execution of all FATF-related tasks till December 1.