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FATF lists three key issues Malta should address following its grey listing

Having placed Malta under increased monitoring on the 23 June 2021, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has published three key issues Malta must address in order for it to be removed from the list.

Whilst, the FATF noted that Malta has made progress on a number of recommended actions to improve its systems in the fight against Money Laundering and the Financing of Terrorism, further progress was required. To this end, the FATF’s action plan for Malta not be regarded as a jurisdiction with strategic deficiencies is composed of three targets:  

(1) continuing to demonstrate that beneficial ownership information is accurate and that, where appropriate, effective, proportionate, and dissuasive sanctions, commensurate with the ML/TF risks, are applied to legal persons if information provided is found to be inaccurate; and ensuring that effective, proportionate, and dissuasive sanctions are applied to gatekeepers when they do not comply with their obligations to obtain accurate and up-to-date beneficial ownership information;

(2) enhancing the use of the FIU’s financial intelligence to support authorities pursuing criminal tax and related money laundering cases, including by clarifying the roles and responsibilities of the Commissioner for Revenue and the FIU; and

(3) increasing the focus of the FIU’s analysis on these types of offences, to produce intelligence that helps Maltese law enforcement detect and investigate cases in line with Malta’s identified ML risks related to tax evasion.

Whilst the Maltese Government has stressed its commitment to work towards reaching the goals set by the FATF soonest, Fitch Ratings has, today, confirmed that Malta’s credit rating will not be immediately impacted by the FATF’s decision.

Photo: Finance Magnates

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