LONDON - Prime Minister Imran Khan telephoned Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad in London Saturday to thank Malaysia for its support of Pakistan’s bid to avoid being blacklisted by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).
Dr Mahathir, who is in the United Kingdom for a three-day working visit, took the six-minute call at the Malaysian High Commission.
Malaysia’s support was seen as crucial in helping to stop Pakistan from being blacklisted after India had put forth a motion with FATF to blacklist the country for money-laundering activities linked to terrorism. With Malaysia’s backing, Pakistan now has the support of three nations.
After taking the call from Imran, Dr Mahathir told the Malaysian media present at the High Commission that Malaysia showed its support to Pakistan as the country has upped its war against money laundering. “We decided based on the rule of law. Not due to animosity.
We admit that money laundering is a major problem and it is happening because of the borderless world that allows free flow of capital,” he said, adding there was no point blacklisting any particular nation.
He also pointed out that the free flow of capital has affected other countries as well, including Malaysia , where capitalists have invested huge amounts of money in the share markets pushing up share prices. “At the end of the day, they sell their shares for a profit and take back their capital and their earnings at the expense of the countries they invested in,” he said.
Dr Mahathir also touched on the irony of trade wars, where the world promoted trade on one hand and on the other imposed sanctions. “In the end many innocent nations such as Malaysia are also affected. Hence, though we have no problem with Iran, we cannot trade with the country because of the sanctions. The trade war with China is also affecting us,” he said.
Meanwhile, after Dr Mahathir took the phone call from Imran, Foreign Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah told reporters that with Malaysia’s support, Pakistan has three nations behind it, with the other two being China and Turkey, and hence it could no longer be blacklisted.