Anti-Terror Watchdog FATF Puts Pakistan On "Grey List" Till February 2020: Report

The FATF will take a final decision on Pakistan's position in February 2020.

Anti-Terror Watchdog FATF Puts Pakistan On 'Grey List' Till February 2020: Report

Pakistan has been asked to undertake extra measures to eliminate terror financing by the watchdog (File)

Islamabad:

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has decided, in principle, to keep Pakistan in its "Grey List" until February 2020, directing Islamabad to take extra measures to completely eliminate terror financing and money laundering, media reported on Wednesday.

The FATF is an inter-governmental body established in 1989 to combat money laundering, terrorist financing and other related problems that are a threat to the integrity of the international financial system.

In a meeting in Paris on Tuesday, the FATF reviewed the measures that Pakistan has already taken to control money laundering and terror financing, Pakistan's Dawn News reported.

The Paris-based task force has urged Pakistan to take extra measures for the complete elimination of terror financing, Pakistan's Aaj TV reported.

The FATF will take a final decision on Pakistan's position in February 2020.

A formal announcement about the interim developments will be made on Friday, which is the last day of the FATF's ongoing session, the report said.

However, Pakistan's Finance Ministry spokesperson Omar Hameed Khan rejected the reports of the country remaining in the "Grey List" and said, "It is not true and nothing before October 18 (can be confirmed)".

The FATF has decided to give four month's respite to Pakistan to help her implement the remaining recommendations of the task force, Aaj TV reported.

Earlier at the FATF meeting in Paris, Pakistan's Minister for Economic Affairs Hammad Azhar had explained his country's positive performance in 20 of the 27 parameters that help check terror financing.

According to Dawn News, China, Turkey and Malaysia had "appreciated" the steps taken by Pakistan. A country needs the support of at least three other countries to avoid being blacklisted.

At the Tuesday meeting, India recommended the blacklisting of Pakistan citing the permission granted to Hafiz Saeed by Islamabad to withdraw funds from his frozen accounts, the report said.

The meeting is being attended by representatives from 205 countries, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the United Nations, the World Bank and other organisations.

Concerns were also raised on the tax amnesty scheme offered in Pakistan, the report added.

Pakistan was placed on the "Grey List" by the Paris-based watchdog in June last year and was asked to complete a plan of action by October 2019, or face the risk of being placed on the blacklist along with Iran and North Korea.

If Pakistan continues to remain on the ''Grey List'', it would be very difficult for the country to get any financial aid from the IMF, the World Bank and the European Union, making its financial condition even more precarious.

Islamabad is obligated to report its performance to the group every three months.

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