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Minister of Finance to advance work on the Implementation of the Anti-money Laundering . . .



Ministry of Finance and Planning | 2012-04-18 10:38:00

Minister of Finance to advance work on the Implementation of the
Anti-money Laundering and Counter the Financing of Terrorism Framework

The Honourable Minister of Finance and Planning, Dr. Peter Phillips, has signaled theGovernment of Jamaica’s intentions to make top-priority amendments to several pieces oflegislation and regulations to ensure the full implementation of a modern Anti-MoneyLaundering (AML) and Counter the Financing of Terrorism (CFT) framework.Implementation of this framework is a part of the country’s obligation, as a member to theCaribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF), to address those deficiencies/weaknesses thatleave the country vulnerable to the laundering of funds derived from criminal activity. As amember of the CFATF, Jamaica is required to implement the Financial Action Task Force’s(FATF1) 40 recommendations on Anti Money Laundering and the 9 special recommendations onCountering the Financing of Terrorism.

Failure to implement these AML/CFT measures putsJamaica’s reputation and the good standing of its financial sector and law enforcementauthorities at serious risk. Failure to implement these measures appropriately could alsofundamentally affect Jamaica’s chances of successfully launching an international financialservices centre.

Dr. Phillips has been briefed by the Jamaican authorities on the existing AML/CFTrequirements, the deficiencies to be addressed as well as the legislative amendments required toaddress those deficiencies. He has acknowledged that while strides have been made to make thecountry more compliant with regional and international standards (such as the passage of theProceeds of Crimes Act, the Terrorism Prevention Act and the Financial Investigations DivisionAct), he is very dissatisfied at the rate of progress that has been made in fulfilling the conditionsimposed in the FATF recommendations since Jamaica’s last Mutual Evaluation by the CFATF in2005.He has pledged his support, and the Government’s cooperation and commitment in taking thenecessary steps to make Jamaica fully compliant, in the shortest time possible, with respect to therequirements for having a robust and effective anti-money laundering and counter terroristfinancing system.

In this regard, the Government has sought international assistance in areasrelating to the coordination of enforcement and regulatory activities.Some of the priority areas to be addressed arising from the 2005 CFATF Mutual Evaluation2ofJamaica are:

..2/ AML/CFT Framework

  • Amendments to the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA) and its regulations;
  •  Regulating certain financial activities such as micro-financing and money-lending and
  • bringing them under POCA;
  • Taking measures to operationalize the Terrorism Prevention Act (TPA) by listing
  • terrorist entities;
  • Finalizing the review of and ensuring the passage of the Charities Act;
  •  Reviewing the legal framework for Financial Investigations Division (FID) and
  • strengthening the institutional capacity of the Division.
  • Extending the AML/CFT framework to Designated Non-Financial Businesses and
  • Professions (DNFBPs).

Under the 40+9 recommendations it is required that certain “gatekeeper” professions outside ofthe financial sector (DNFBPs) be subjected to AML/CFT obligations. To date, the authoritieshave held consultations with some of the key professions, who will be impacted by theimplementation of this framework. In 2010, Cabinet approved a list that includes attorney-atlaws,accountants, casinos, real estate brokers, trustees and dealers in precious stones and metals.The imposition of the AML/CFT regime will also have implications for the supervisoryauthorities that regulate these sectors, in terms of resources and training.

Additionally, because of the wide span of issues involved, the implementation of theseAML/CFT reforms require cross-ministry and cross-agency involvement. Consequently, ameeting is shortly to be convened with the Ministries of Finance and Planning, NationalSecurity, Justice, and Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, as well as with the Bank of Jamaica,Financial Investigation Division, Financial Services Commission and the Jamaica ConstabularyForce (JCF) to set out the work programme and timetable for the earliest implementation of these reforms.

Notes:
1. Mutual Evaluations carried out by the CFATF are based on the Forty (40)
Recommendations on Anti Money Laundering and the Nine (9) Special
recommendations on Combating the Financing of Terrorism issued by the Financial
Action Task Force (FATF) as an initiative to combat the misuse of
financial systems by persons involved in Money Laundering and the financing of terrorist
acts and terrorist organisations.


2. The Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) is an organisation of twenty-nine
states within the Central America and Caribbean region, which have agreed to implement
common counter-measures to address the problem of money laundering and
terrorist financing.

 

1 The FATF is a part of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
2 Based on the 2005 Report, Jamaica was compliant or largely compliant with 30 of the 40+8 Recommendations
that existed at the time. A 9th Special Recommendation was added by the FATF after Jamaica’s evaluation.

 

April 17, 2012
For more information contact:
Communication & Public Relations Unit
Ministry of Finance and Planning
Tel: 932-4656/4655
Email: cheryl.smith@mof.gov.jm / christine.day-hinds@mof.gov.jm




Posted By :Cheryl Smith

Company Name : Ministry of Finance and Planning

Website :

Company Address : 30 National Heroes Circle Kingston 4


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