FATF meeting being held in Paris will announce its decision on October 18 regarding keeping Pakistan on its grey list. Image Credit: FATF

Dubai: The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has reportedly decided that Pakistan will remain on its grey list till February 2020, according to reports which the Pakistani officials did not confirm.

The spokesperson for the finance ministry, Omar Hameed Khan was approached to verify the news about FATF decision to keep Pakistan on FATF grey list but he said that “it is not true and nothing before October 18”, Dawn news reported.

According to reports, the FATF has directed Islamabad to take ‘extra measures’ for complete elimination of terror financing and money laundering.

An FATF meeting in Paris on Tuesday reviewed the measures that Islamabad has already taken to control money laundering and terror financing. The meeting observed that Islamabad will have to take further steps in these four months until the next review in February 2020.

A tweet by the FATF says: "FATF President Xiangmin Liu opened the FATF Plenary meeting. The key outcomes of the next 3 days of meetings on global action against moneylaundering and terrorist financing, and decisions on Pakistan, Iran and other countries to be announced on Friday (October 18)

A Pakistani delegation led by Minister for Economic Affairs Hammad Azhar told the meeting that Islamabad has made positive progress in 20 out of 27 points. The FATF expressed satisfaction on the measures taken by Pakistan and its progress in various areas.

Six days of FATF meetings will focus on disrupting financial flows linked to crimes and terrorism and discuss ways to contribute to global safety and security. China, Turkey and Malaysia appreciated the steps taken by Pakistan.

Meanwhile, representatives from 205 countries and jurisdictions around the world, the IMF, UN, World Bank and other organisations are attending the meeting.

At the Tuesday meeting, India has recommended to blacklist Pakistan on the plea that Islamabad has allowed Hafiz Saeed to withdraw funds from his frozen accounts. Concerns were also raised on the tax amnesty scheme offered in Pakistan.

On the outright support extended by Turkey, China and Malaysia, the FATF decided not to include Pakistan on the blacklist and give it more time to implement the remaining measures.

The decision to stay on grey list is still considered a success of the Pakistan government. Moreover, the FATF also acknowledged the steps already taken by Pakistan to prevent money laundering and terrorists’ access to financial sources. The FATF stressed the need for further implementation of the action plan by Pakistan.

According to the FATF charter comprising 36 countries, the support of at least three countries is required to not blacklist any country.

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has expressed satisfaction at the measures taken by Pakistan and its progress in various areas.

A Pakistani delegation led by Minister for Economic Affairs Hammad Azhar told the FATF meeting that Pakistan has made positive progress in 20 out of 27 points, Radio Pakistan reported on Monday.

What is FATF

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) is an inter-governmental body established in 1989 by the Ministers of its Member jurisdictions. The objectives of the FATF are to set standards and promote effective implementation of legal, regulatory and operational measures for combating money laundering, terrorist financing and other related threats to the integrity of the international financial system. The FATF is therefore a “policy-making body” which works to generate the necessary political will to bring about national legislative and regulatory reforms in these areas.