Panama will remain on FATF Gray List

 
2,237Views 0Comments Posted 24/02/2023

 

After three days of meetings, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) based in Paris announced that Panama will remain on the organization’s gray list and expressed its "concern" that Panama did not apply its action plan, which expired in January 2021.

Therefore, the FATF “strongly” urged the Panamanian authorities to complete their action plan by June of this year. Otherwise,         it will study asking its members and calling on all jurisdictions to apply greater vigilance over business relations and transactions with Panama”, in a message similar to the one issued in the latest evaluations. Panama entered the FATF gray list in June 2019.       

The Government reacted to the news by stating that "Panama continues to make progress in complying with the Action Plan  and is preparing to request an on-site visit ", so that the progress can be corroborated by the representatives of each institution," Panama reiterates the commitment that it maintains at the highest level, to continue strengthening its AML/CFT system [National Anti-Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing System], and to culminate with the country's action plan," remarked the Ministry of Finance (MEF)

During the last FATF plenary meeting, Panama obtained a rating upgrade for its action plan. It has fulfilled 13 actions of the 15 that were established by the agency, in June 2019.

According to the MEF, of the two actions that remain classified as partially fulfilled, significant progress was made, for which the Joint Group of the Americas of the ICRG [International Country Risk Guide or International Country Risk Guide,] of the FATF, concluded that "despite the technical challenges that Panama has faced to populate the Single Registry of Final Beneficiaries (RUBF), the efforts that the country is making to implement it quickly are recognized."

"The challenge to be met by Panama to complete the action plan is to increase the burden of information on legal persons in the RUBF, as well as guarantee that the competent authorities have timely access to the information of beneficial owners," the MEF stated after meeting the FATF decision.