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Qatar Needs To Make Some ‘Major Improvements’: Money Laundering Watchdog Says

source-logo  cryptonews.com 01 June 2023 18:00, UTC

Qatar needs to make some “major improvements,” on how it responds to terrorist financing, according to a global money laundering and terrorist financing watchdog.

The Financial Action Task Force accused Qatar of not having enough controls and needs to better understand “more complex forms of money laundering and terrorist financing,” according to a report released by the watchdog on Wednesday.

The report summarized anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing measures from an on-site visit from June 19 to July 7, 2022, according to the report.

Qatar has “a good overall understanding of money laundering and terrorism risks,” at the national level, the watchdog said.

“Nonetheless, further work is necessary to ensure that law enforcement and supervisors are implementing these reforms, particularly in relation to Qatar’s judicial system,” FATF said.

Qatar is investigating more money laundering cases, though the total number of those cases prosecuted remains low overall, the watchdog said.

“Authorities are investigating a range of ML [money laundering] offences; however, case studies suggest that authorities can continue improving their investigations to identify the role Qatar may play in broader, complex or professional ML schemes and networks. Nevertheless, authorities are well-equipped and aware of the current ML risks and are continually improving their abilities to pursue ML.”

FATF taking the lead

Raja Kumar, FATF president, called on the G-7 to put an end to “lawless spaces” and to take the lead to regulate cryptocurrencies, in a statement on May 18.

Kumar called on the finance ministers from some of the world’s seven most influential economies to implement recommendations from the FATF, which include going after money laundering and terrorism financing.

The FATF president said that also includes the travel rule — a requirement that requires crypto service providers to share certain information about transactions to prevent misuse by criminals and terrorists.

“G7 countries should lead by example and regulate the crypto sector so that no virtual safe havens exist for illicit financial transactions,” Kumar said in a post published on Twitter.