Vietnam on financial gray list over arms proliferation risk

Finance


Francesco Guaracio

HANOI, June 24 (Reuters) – Vietnam has been added to the watch list of the FATF, the global financial crime watchdog, but the country is still effectively blocking the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. He said he was trying to prove it.

Friday’s decision adds the Southeast Asian country to a “grey list” of 20 countries worldwide that are subject to greater scrutiny, including Panama, the Cayman Islands, the United Arab Emirates and Syria. Only Myanmar, Iran and North Korea are on the group’s “blacklist.”

Vietnam is one of the few countries that maintains good relations with North Korea, which is actively pursuing a nuclear weapons program despite global condemnation and international sanctions.

Hanoi in March enacted rules to combat money laundering and terrorist financing, but the Paris-based Financial Action Task Force (FATF) said the overhaul was sufficient to avoid greylisting. not thinking

The FATF said Vietnam is now committed to demonstrating effective oversight of banks, accountants and lawyers to prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear, chemical and biological weapons. rice field.

Vietnam also agreed to demonstrate its ability to prevent sanctions evasion against individuals and entities facing international restrictions for their involvement in the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

In addition to Vietnam, 10 African countries, including Mozambique and Uganda, are under FATF oversight for proliferation financing risks, according to a public list on the FATF website.

Vietnam’s foreign ministry did not respond to a request for comment on Saturday.

Vietnam has also pledged to implement additional reforms to address its shortcomings. The FATF said it would work to ensure the independence of authorities charged with investigating financial crimes, regulating virtual assets and strengthening international cooperation against money laundering.

Although the FATF does not recommend increased controls over greylisted jurisdictions, foreign financial institutions tend to monitor their transactions with the country more closely, resulting in an obstacle to the flow of funds. Possibly, so effectively happens when a country is added to the list.

At a summit with South Korea on Friday, Vietnam said it would join the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. (Reported by Francesco Guarascio @fraguarascio; Edited by William Mallard)



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