FATF upgrade PHL status to ‘gray list’-AMLC

THE Anti-Money Laundering Council  (AMLC) said the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has upgraded the Philippines from the “dark gray list” to  “gray list’ after the government took initiatives to enhance its transparency and accountability mechanisms in financial transactions.

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Amando M. Tetangco, Jr., Chairman of the AMLC, in a letter to President Aquino said  the FATF has recognized the reforms instituted by the Philippine government, by upgrading the Philippines from the “dark gray list” to its “gray list.”

The country was previously under the “dark gray list,” which refers to jurisdictions not making sufficient progress, and is now in the “gray list,” which signifies that we are making sufficient progress in addressing deficiencies in our Action Plan.

According Governor Tetangco’s report, the FATF took notice of the passage of key legislative reforms certified as urgent by the President. In particular, the bills recently signed into law – “An Act To Further Strengthen The Anti-Money Laundering Law” and “The Terrorism Financing Prevention And Suppression Act of 2012” – strengthened the capability of government to identify and prevent financial transactions related to illegal activities and those that undermine global security.

Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte said these reforms enabled the Philippines from being classified and downgraded to the “black list,” which would have resulted in stricter inspections of financial transactions in the country, delayed remittances, and higher transaction fees.

Valte said transparency and accountability are among the foremost guiding principles of the Aquino administration.

“And while we recognize that more needs to be done to strengthen our existing anti-money laundering and anti-financial terrorism measures, we take the satisfaction expressed by the FATF as affirmation of the institutional reforms that we have constantly advocated,” Valte said.

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