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Homeland Security

Washington File

20 June 2003

G-7 Ministers Welcome New Anti-Money Laundering Standards

(Finance leaders say FATF standards broaden offense's scope) (350)
The finance ministers of the Group of 7 (G-7) industrialized nations
have said they welcome action by the international Financial Action
Task Force (FATF) to create a stronger framework for combating global
money laundering.
FATF's revision of its recommended standards "significantly enhances
the standard for customer due diligence, broadens the scope of the
money laundering offence, improves transparency of legal persons and
arrangements and strengthens international cooperation and suspicious
transactions reporting," the ministers said in a June 20 press
release.
FATF originally passed money laundering standards in 1990 to combat
the misuse of financial systems by persons laundering drug money. In
1996 the recommendations were revised to reflect evolving money
laundering methods.
FATF, based at the Organization for Economic Cooperation and
Development (OECD) in Paris, comprises 33 members -- 31 countries,
including the United States, the European Union and the Gulf
Cooperation Council -- and more than 20 observers.
The G-7 comprises Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United
States and the United Kingdom. The group announced its support on the
same day FATF announced the revised recommendations.
Following is the text of the G-7 press release:
(begin text)
June 20, 2003
Statement by G7 Finance Ministers
Revision of the Financial Action Task Force 40 Recommendations
We welcome the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) revision of its 40
recommendations, which set the international standard in the fight
against money laundering and terrorist financing.
This new standard represents a crucial step forward in the
international fight against financial crime. The revision of the FATF
40 recommendations significantly enhances the standard for customer
due diligence, broadens the scope of the money laundering offence,
improves transparency of legal persons and arrangements and
strengthens international cooperation and suspicious transactions
reporting. It also enlarges the scope of non-financial professions and
businesses involved in this collective effort.
We strongly endorse these new recommendations and reaffirm our
commitment to taking early steps towards complying with this revised
standard and to promoting its world-wide implementation.
(end text)
(Distributed by the Bureau of International Information Programs, U.S.
Department of State. Web site: http://usinfo.state.gov)



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