Convicted Money Launderer Altaf Khanani Had Close Ties to Top Pakistani Politicians
Convicted money launderer Altaf Khanani and his patrons among Pakistani politicians appear to have brought FATF's attention to Pakistan when the country was first put on its grey list back in 2012. A new national financial crimes bill was introduced by the ruling Pakistan People's Party which was so full of holes that a senior FIA official complained publicly it was "drafted by a money-launderer". Khanani is believed to have moved over $12 billion a year of dirty money through Pakistani banking system. Altaf Khanani's 2015 conviction on money laundering charges by a US court and recent FinCEN files confirm that Khanani was a big time international criminal. Khanani has recently been released after serving a 5 year sentence in a US jail. His current whereabouts are unknown. Pakistan was removed from FATF grey list in 2015 but it was back on it again in 2018.
|Pakistan on FATF Grey List|
Who is Altaf Khanani?
Altaf Khanani is a member of Karachi's memon business community. Along with his twin brother Javed, he started their money-changing business under the name of Khanani and Kalia Inc (KKI) in 1984. By the 1990s, more foreign currency was passing through KKI than the banking system of Pakistan! By 1997 many governments were looking into KKI’s network but the twins were close to Pakistan's ruling elite. In 2008, Khanani brothers were charged with money laundering in Pakistan but later exonerated due to lack of evidence. FIA's appeal against their acquittals were rejected by the Sindh High Court as recently as 2019. However, a US court convicted Altaf Khanani of money laundering in 2015 and sentenced him to 5 years in jail. His brother Javed died in mysterious circumstances in 2016. His death was labeled as suicide. KKI partner Munaf Kalia now lives in Karachi. Altaf has recently been released from a US prison after serving his 5 year term. His whereabouts are unknown.
A 2017 US State Department report labelled the Altaf Khanani group as a money laundering organization (MLO) and said it laundered billions of dollars of dirty money.
The 2017 US report said: “The Altaf Khanani money laundering organization (Khanani MLO) is based in Pakistan. The group, which was designated a transnational organized crime group by the United States in November 2015, facilitates illicit money movement between, among others, Pakistan, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), United States, UK, Canada, and Australia.” “There is a substantial demand for money laundering and illicit financial services due to the country’s black market economy and challenging security environment,” the report added.
In 2007 and 2008 alone, Khanani's company Khanani and Kalia's official banking records showed the company handled $2.3 billion, according to the Australian Federal Police. David Stewart, an assistant commissioner of Australian Police, said the Khanani's hawala-based operation was "turning over between 14 and 16 billion US dollars annually".
In 2008, Pakistan's Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) alleged that Khanani's company had illegally siphoned $US10 billion out of Pakistan. But few among the ruling politicians seemed to want to see the case proceed. "For fear of their own identities being revealed," Dawn newspaper columnist Khurram Husain said, "a very wide spectrum of very powerful interests mobilized in order to try and protect these [KKI] people."
In 2010, a critical affidavit omitted the names of the very KKI directors who had been originally arraigned, according to ABC News. A new national financial crimes statute was introduced by the ruling Pakistan People's Party which was so full of holes that a senior FIA official complained publicly it was "drafted by a money-launderer". In 2012, a specially convened banking court acquitted the eight company officials, and in 2013, Altaf Khanani was also exonerated by the District and Sessions Court in Karachi.
In 2016, Pakistan's then Home Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan accused the Pakistan People's Party of being hand-in-glove with Khanani. He said: “During the tenure of the previous government, PPP officials had massively laundered money with the help of one of the biggest money changers, Khanani and Kalia, and later destroyed the evidence".
“Billions of rupees had been laundered by the currency dealer in connivance with people in the then government. On the direction of ‘these people’ the record had been destroyed and now I am looking for this record,” Nisar added.
In its 2018 annual assessment of serious and organized crime, the British National Crime Agency named Pakistan among the top 3 sources of money laundering. It said: “Investment in UK property, particularly in London, continues to be an attractive mechanism to launder funds....As the UK moves towards exiting the EU in March 2019, UK-based businesses may look to increase the amount of trade they have with non-EU countries....We judge this will increase the likelihood that UK businesses will come into contact with corrupt markets, particularly in the developing world, raising the risk they will be drawn into corrupt practices.”
1. "The UK is a prime destination for foreign corrupt PEPs (politically exposed persons, a euphemism for politicians and their family member) to launder the proceeds of corruption. Investment in UK property, particularly in London, continues to be an attractive mechanism to launder funds. The true scale of PEPs investment in the UK is not known, however the source countries that are most commonly seen are Russia, Nigeria and Pakistan".
2. "The overseas jurisdictions that have the most enduring impact on the UK across the majority of the different money laundering threats are: Russia, China, Hong Kong, Pakistan, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Some of these jurisdictions have large financial sectors which also make them attractive as destinations or transit points for the proceeds of crime."
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Thanks to IK, all money laundering is now being done inside Pakistan through "construction projects" on Sindhi islands stolen by Punjabi federal government.
One of these days you will understand the crap you publish without thinking, investigating, or cross verifying.
However, I am concerned about development on Sindhi islands and like Shams I am against Malik Riaz’s schemes. Malik Riaz has convinced the government to ignore the delicate ecology and environment of the Sindhi Islands so he can make a lot of money by developing new cities.
I think one of the Kalia brothers was an NEDian.
The problem goes back to Zardari years when PPP politicians laundered billions of dollars under a legislation that an FIA official said was "drafted by a money launderer".
In 2017, FATF gave the PML N government a list of 27 actions required to stay off the grey list.
When they failed to act on it, Pakistan ended up on the grey list in June, 2018. The PTI government has now satisfied FATAF on 21 of the 27 items, including strong anti money laundering legislation, and managed to keep the country off the black list.
FATF may have been used against Pakistan as a political tool of the imperial powers. I hope it turns out to be a blessing in disguise to help document Pakistan's vast underground economy, rampant #corruption and widespread #tax evasion. Recent anti-AML legislation is good start.
BBC journalist Stephen Sackur is known for grilling his guests on his show 'HardTalk and former finance minister Ishaq Dar was no exception as he was posed with hardhitting questions.
Soon after the interview was aired snippets were widely shared on Pakistani Twitter Dar answering Sackur's questions with #IshaqDar and #StephenSackur becoming the top trends in the country.
One Twitter user said that Dar expected the interview be like Pakistani journalist Hamid Mir's 'Capital Talk', however, he the PML-N leader was in for a rude awakening.
Journalist Shiffa Yousafzai drew attention to Sackur telling the former minister that "Nawaz Sharif worked hand in glove with Zia ul Haq and now the PML-N is complaining about military interference in politics".
Yousafzai added that the journalist interviewing PML-N vice-president would be "interesting"
Even the BBC journalist himself wrote on his Twitter handle that his interview had caused quite a stir in Pakistan.
Dar said PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif is struggling for democracy and supremacy of the parliament in Pakistan and the current government is a form of 'judicial martial law'.
The now absconding former minister said he does not accuse the army, as an institution, of undermining the democratic process in Pakistan but stated that "it is the will and plan of some people, the same people who enforce martial law in Pakistan".
When Dar was asked if the army or the army chief were undermining democracy, he said that the PML-N is not alone and international reports also have said the same. "I am not talking about the entire institution, we need to differentiate. These are the wishes and plans of certain people, the same people who enforce martial law in Pakistan."
"We are saying that if the elections were rigged, and this has now been proven, without doubt, someone is planning the entire thing. This is not us saying it, but the interior minister of Pakistan said that if Nawaz Sharif did not have issues with the institutions and the deep state, he would have become prime minister for the fourth time."
When asked if he had come to London seeking refuge as he is an absconder in Pakistan, the former finance minister said corruption allegations have been used repeatedly in the country's history and in the present circumstances, the current government is a "judicial martial law".
Accountability in Pakistan
Most likely outcome if a high-ranking government officer is caught embezzling public funds.
Washington, Jul 20 (PTI) Pakistan has made significant progress on its first action plan of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) by largely addressing 26 of the 27 action items, the US has said.
It has also urged Pakistan to swiftly complete the remaining action item by demonstrating that terrorism financing, investigations and prosecutions target senior leaders and commanders of UN-designated terror groups.
At its virtual plenary meeting last month, the FATF had retained Pakistan on its 'grey list' for failing to check money laundering, leading to terror financing. It had also asked Pakistan to investigate and prosecute UN-designated terrorists based in the country like Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) chief Masood Azhar and Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) founder Hafiz Saeed.
The global body against money laundering and terror financing had also asked Pakistan to work to address its strategically important deficiencies.
At his daily news conference on Monday, State Department spokesperson Ned Price said, 'We do recognise and we support Pakistan's continued efforts to satisfy those (first action plan) obligations. Pakistan has made significant progress on its first action plan with 26 of 27 action items largely addressed.' 'We encourage Pakistan to continue working with the FATF and the international community to swiftly complete the remaining action item by demonstrating that terrorism financing, investigations and prosecutions target senior leaders and commanders of UN-designated groups,' he said.
In response to a question, Price said the US encourages Pakistan to expeditiously work on its new second action plan.
Pakistan was placed on the 'grey list' by the FATF in June 2018 and was given a plan of action to complete by October 2019. Since then the country continues to be on this list due to its failure to comply with the FATF mandates.
With Pakistan's continuation on the 'grey list', it is increasingly becoming difficult for the country to get financial aid from the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, Asian Development Bank and the European Union at a time when it faces a precarious financial situation.
Islamabad has managed to avoid the 'black list', for which it needs the support of three countries. China, Turkey and Malaysia have been its consistent supporters. PTI LKJ DIV DIV
A day ago, India's Minister for External Affairs S Jaishankar said the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) government led by Narendra Modi ensured that Pakistan remained on the 'grey list' of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), Hindustan Times reported.
“Due to us, Pakistan is under the lens of FATF and it was kept in the grey list," Jaishankar was quoted as saying while addressing a virtual training programme on foreign policy for BJP leaders.
He added: “We have been successful in pressurising Pakistan and the fact that Pakistan's behaviour has changed is because of pressure put by India by various measures.”
During the session, the minister also credited the Indian government’s efforts "through the United Nations" for sanctions on proscribed organisations such as Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed, according to the report.
FATF assessment of Pakistan
The FATF had on June 25 announced that Pakistan will continue to remain on the watchdog's "increased monitoring list" till it addresses the single remaining item on the original action plan agreed to in June 2018 as well as all items on a parallel action plan handed out by the watchdog's regional partner — the Asia Pacific Group (APG) — in 2019.
The Foreign Office (FO) said on Monday that the Indian foreign minister's statement that the Narendra Modi government had ensured Pakistan remained on the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) grey list had vindicated Pakistan's longstanding stance on "India's negative role" in the global financial watchdog.
The FO said the India foreign minister's statement had exposed India's "true colours" and "duplicitous" role.
"Pakistan has always been highlighting to the international community the politicisation of FATF and undermining of its processes by India. The recent Indian statement is just further corroboration of its continued efforts to use an important technical forum for its narrow political designs against Pakistan.
"While Pakistan has been sincerely and constructively engaged with FATF during the implementation of the action plan, India has left no stone unturned in casting doubts on Pakistan’s progress through disgraceful means," said the FO statement.
It said Pakistan would continue exposing India's role to the international community by bringing the recent "confession" to the FATF's and international community's notice.
It added that Pakistan was also considering approaching the financial watchdog for "appropriate action" in the matter.
"Following the recent confession by [the] Indian government, India’s credentials for assessing Pakistan in FATF as co-chair of the Joint Group or for that matter any other country are subject to questions, which we urge FATF to look into," the statement said.
The FO said Pakistan's "immense progress" in Anti-Money Laundering/Combating the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) had been demonstrated through "concrete, tangible and verifiable actions" that were acknowledged by FATF.
"We are resolved to sustain this momentum and trajectory with the support and cooperation of our international partners. India’s delusions of putting pressure on Pakistan have always remained unfulfilled and would never see the light of day.
Pandora Papers PAKISTAN
Prime Minister Imran Khan promised ‘new Pakistan’ but members of his inner circle secretly moved millions offshore
Leak shows a key ally tried to bypass tax authorities and political and military elites bought luxury apartments and set up shell companies.
By Margot Gibbs and Malia Politzer
Now leaked documents reveal that key members of Khan’s inner circle, including cabinet ministers, their families and major financial backers have secretly owned an array of companies and trusts holding millions of dollars of hidden wealth. Military leaders have been implicated as well. The documents contain no suggestion that Khan himself owns offshore companies.
Among those whose holdings have been exposed are Khan’s finance minister, Shaukat Fayaz Ahmed Tarin, and his family, and the son of Khan’s former adviser for finance and revenue, Waqar Masood Khan. The records also reveal the offshore dealings of a top PTI donor, Arif Naqvi, who is facing fraud charges in the United States.
The files show how Chaudhry Moonis Elahi, a key political ally of Imran Khan’s, planned to put the proceeds from an allegedly corrupt business deal into a secret trust, concealing them from Pakistan’s tax authorities. Elahi did not respond to ICIJ’s repeated requests for comment. Today, a family spokesman told ICIJ’s media partners that, “due to political victimisation misleading interpretations and data have been circulated in files for nefarious reasons.” He added that the family’s assets “are declared as per applicable law”.
In one of several offshore holdings involving military leaders and their families, a luxury London apartment was transferred from the son of a famous Indian movie director to the wife of a three-star general. The general told ICIJ the property purchase was disclosed and proper; his wife didn’t reply.
The revelations are part of the Pandora Papers, a new global investigation into the shadowy offshore financial system that allows multinational corporations, the rich, famous and powerful to avoid taxes and otherwise shield their wealth. The probe is based on more than 11.9 million confidential files from 14 offshore services firms leaked to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists and shared with 150 news organizations around the world.
UAE landing in FATF "grey list" won't come as a surprise for those who are closely following the region. Regardless of Regional political dynamics and overall political nature of the body, UAE has serious flaws in the financial system, this move might cost around $8-10 Billion.
The UAE’s booming construction and real estate sector emerges as another major weakness. It accounts for a fifth of the Emirates’ GDP, but remains incredibly vulnerable to money laundering. Complex ownership structures can be used to obscure the identity of those buying property, as well as where their money is coming from.
Despite the UAE’s role as a major international hub for finance and trade, the report concludes that authorities there are not cooperating with international partners. This could make the Emirates an attractive location in which “criminals could operate, maintain their illegal proceeds, or use as a safe haven.”
The FATF report confirms what investigative journalists, anti-corruption activists and whistleblowers have been saying for years: the UAE is a key piece in the global money-laundering puzzle. Its susceptibility to money laundering has seen it appear time and again in major cross-border corruption scandals.
Here, we take a look at the shameful role of the UAE, and in particular Dubai, in some of the biggest scandals of recent years.
(Bloomberg) -- The United Arab Emirates is at increased risk of being placed on a global watchdog’s list of countries subject to more oversight for shortcomings in combating money laundering and terrorist financing, even after a recent government push to stamp out illicit transactions.
The Financial Action Task Force is leaning toward adding the UAE to its “gray list” early this year, one of two classifications used by the intergovernmental body for nations determined to have “strategic deficiencies,” according to people familiar with the matter, who requested anonymity because the discussions are private.
Should the FATF approve the designation, it would be among the most significant such steps in the Paris-based group’s three-decade history given the UAE’s position as the main financial hub of the Middle East. The FATF currently puts 23 countries -- including Albania, Syria and South Sudan -- under closer scrutiny, with only Iran and North Korea on its highest-risk “black list.”
“There are undoubtedly costs associated with being gray-listed,” said Katherine Bauer, a former Treasury Department official who led the U.S. delegation to the Middle East and North Africa Financial Action Task Force, a regional body modeled after the FATF.
“Many global regulators require that banks and financial institutions review, if not revise, their risk ratings and associated due diligence measures for counterparties in countries on the FATF list,” said Bauer, who’s now a fellow with the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.
The UAE submitted a report to the FATF in November but hasn’t reached many of the thresholds needed to stay off the gray list, the people said. The group is expected to make a decision at a plenary meeting set for late February. There are still several opportunities for Emirati officials to make their case to the FATF, including during a planned trip to Paris in the coming weeks, they said.
“We are taking this very seriously, having partnered with highly skilled and experienced specialists with a track-record in meeting best international practices and standards,” Hamid Al Zaabi, director general of the UAE Executive Office for Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing, said in a statement to Bloomberg News.
EXPLAINER: All About FATF, a Global Weapon to Fight Dirty Money: QuickTake
“The UAE is fully committed to upholding the integrity of the international financial system, which includes working closely with our partners around the world to combat financial crime,” he said.
A FATF spokesperson declined to comment. A gray-listing applies to countries that have “strategic deficiencies in their regimes to counter money laundering, terrorist financing, and proliferation financing” but which are committed to address the issues “swiftly,” according to its website.
In a report published in April 2020, the FATF questioned the UAE’s system despite what it called “significant steps” to strengthen regulations, including new legislation in 2018 and 2019.
“Fundamental and major improvements are needed across the UAE in order to demonstrate that the system cannot be used for money laundering/terrorist financing and the financing of proliferation of weapons of mass destruction,” the group said at the time.
Since the FATF’s warning in 2020, the UAE government has taken numerous steps to better align with global standards on anti-money laundering and countering terrorist financing, according to Ibtissem Lassoued, the Dubai-based head of advisory in financial crime at law firm Al Tamimi & Co.
Lahore: Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif testified today in a special court hearing in the Pakistan Rupee 16 billion money laundering case against him that he had refused to take any salary when he was the Chief Minister of Pakistan's Punjab province, and called himself a "majnoo" for doing so.
Shehbaz Sharif and his sons - Hamza and Suleman - were charged by Pakistan's Federal Investigation Agency or FIA in November 2020 under various sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act and Anti-Money Laundering Act.
Hamza Sharif is currently the Chief Minister of Pakistan's Punjab province, while Suleman Sharif is residing in the UK.
The FIA investigation has detected 28 benami accounts, allegedly of the Shehbaz family, through which an amount of Pakistan Rupee 14 billion (USD 75 million) was laundered from 2008 to 2018.
The FIA examined the money trail of 17,000 credit transactions.
The amount was kept in "hidden accounts" and given to Shehbaz Sharif in his personal capacity, according to the charges.
"I have not taken anything from the government in 12.5 years, and in this case, I am accused of laundering ₹ 2.5 million," Shehbaz Sharif said during the hearing.
"God has made me the Prime Minister of this country. I am a majnoo (fool) and I did not take my legal right, my salary and benefits," Pakistan's Dawn newspaper quoted him as saying.
He recalled that the secretary had sent a note to him for sugar exports during his tenure as Chief Minister of Punjab province, when he had set an export limit and rejected the notes, the report said.
Shehbaz Sharif first became Chief Minister of Punjab province in 1997 when his brother Nawaz Sharif was the Prime Minister of Pakistan.
Following General Pervez Musharraf's coup in 1999 toppling the Nawaz Sharif government, Shehbaz Sharif along with the family spent eight years in exile in Saudi Arabia before returning to Pakistan in 2007.
He became Pakistan's Punjab Chief Minister for the second term in 2008 and he grabbed the same slot for the third time in 2013.
"My family lost PKR 2 billion because of my decision. I am telling you the reality. When my son's ethanol production plant was being set up, I still decided to impose a duty on ethanol. My family lost PKR 800 million annually because of that decision. The previous government withdrew that notification stating that it was injustice with the sugar mills," he claimed.
The Prime Minister's counsel argued that the laundering case was "politically motivated" and "based on mala fide intentions" by the erstwhile government headed by Imran Khan.
During the previous hearing on May 21, the special court had issued arrest warrants against Suleman Sharif, in the case after extending the interim bails of Shehbaz Sharif and Hamza Sharif till May 28.
A global anti-money laundering watchdog removed Pakistan from its “gray” monitoring list after four years, providing relief for the South Asian nation that is facing a crisis.
The Paris-based Financial Action Task Force said the country “has strengthened the effectiveness” of its regime for anti-money laundering and combating terror financing, and addressed technical deficiencies to meet the commitments of its action plans.
Pakistan has been on the FATF’s monitoring list since 2018 for its inability to combat money laundering and terror financing. It was given a 27-point plan that year and another seven-point action plan in 2021. In September of this year, the watchdog had sent a team to verify steps taken.
The exit will ease access to finances for the country after catastrophic flooding caused losses of around $40 billion to lives and livelihoods. Fitch Ratings and Moody’s Investors Service have downgraded the nation’s credit rating deeper into junk while its bonds traded in distressed territory.
FATF is an intra-governmental body that includes 37 countries and two regional organizations. China, Turkey and Malaysia have lobbied in the past to prevent severe penalties against Pakistan, while India, which accuses Islamabad of funding militant groups operating in its portion of Kashmir, had sought a downgrade to the more severe blacklist
Pakistan and Nicaragua have been removed from the FATF’s Jurisdictions under Increased Monitoring list, often referred to as the 'grey list'. See the full update on the list here➡️ https://bit.ly/3Dj3K9S #FollowTheMoney
Paris, 21 October 2022 - Jurisdictions under increased monitoring are actively working with the FATF to address strategic deficiencies in their regimes to counter money laundering, terrorist financing, and proliferation financing. When the FATF places a jurisdiction under increased monitoring, it means the country has committed to resolve swiftly the identified strategic deficiencies within agreed timeframes and is subject to increased monitoring. This list is often externally referred to as the “grey list”.
The FATF and FATF-style regional bodies (FSRBs) continue to work with the jurisdictions below as they report on the progress achieved in addressing their strategic deficiencies. The FATF calls on these jurisdictions to complete their action plans expeditiously and within the agreed timeframes. The FATF welcomes their commitment and will closely monitor their progress. The FATF does not call for the application of enhanced due diligence measures to be applied to these jurisdictions. The FATF Standards do not envisage de-risking, or cutting-off entire classes of customers, but call for the application of a risk-based approach. Therefore, the FATF encourages its members and all jurisdictions to take into account the information presented below in their risk analysis.
The FATF identifies additional jurisdictions, on an on-going basis, that have strategic deficiencies in their regimes to counter money laundering, terrorist financing, and proliferation financing. A number of jurisdictions have not yet been reviewed by the FATF or their FSRBs, but will be in due course.
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the FATF has provided some flexibility to jurisdictions not facing immediate deadlines to report progress on a voluntary basis. The following countries had their progress reviewed by the FATF since June 2022: Albania, Barbados, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Cayman Islands, Haiti, Jamaica, Jordan, Mali, Morocco, Myanmar, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Panama, Philippines, Senegal, South Sudan, Türkiye, UAE, and Uganda. For these countries, updated statements are provided below. Gibraltar chose to defer reporting; thus, the statement issued in June 2022 for that jurisdiction is included below, but it may not necessarily reflect the most recent status of the jurisdiction’s AML/CFT regime. Following review, the FATF now also identifies the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Mozambique, and Tanzania.
The FATF welcomes the progress made by these countries in combating money laundering and terrorist financing, despite the challenges posed by COVID-19.
The FATF welcomes Pakistan’s significant progress in improving its AML/CFT regime. Pakistan has strengthened the effectiveness of its AML/CFT regime and addressed technical deficiencies to meet the commitments of its action plans regarding strategic deficiencies that the FATF identified in June 2018 and June 2021, the latter of which was completed in advance of the deadlines, encompassing 34 action items in total. Pakistan is therefore no longer subject to the FATF’s increased monitoring process.
Pakistan will continue to work with APG to further improve its AML/CFT system.
In a statement announcing the news on Wednesday, Pakistan’s Ministry of Commerce said the listing of Pakistan in 2018 had resulted in creating a regulatory burden affecting Pakistani companies doing business with the 27-member bloc.
“The new development would add to the comfort level of the European economic operators and is likely to ease the cost and time of legal and financial transactions by Pakistani entities and individuals in EU,” the statement said.
Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari said in a Twitter post that Pakistani businesses and individuals “would no longer be subjected to Enhanced Customer Due Diligence” by European legal and economic operators.
The high-risk third countries list includes nations that, according to the EU, do not have a robust enough regulatory and legal system to prevent financial crimes and “terrorism” financing that could pose significant threats to the financial system of the bloc.
When a country is added to the list, it is subjected to particularly enhanced scrutiny and additional measures that increase the cost of doing business.
The Pakistani entities that will no longer be subjected to enhanced EU scrutiny include credit and financial institutions, auditors, external accountants, tax advisers, notaries and independent legal professionals, among others.