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Kingdom wants off ‘grey list’

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Justice minister Koeut Rith leads a meeting of the ad-hoc commission to review work plans of Asia-Pacific Group on March 3. JUSTICE MINISTRY

Kingdom wants off ‘grey list’

Minister of Justice Koeut Rith led a meeting of an ad-hoc sub-commission to implement an action plan devised by the Asia/Pacific Group on Money Laundering.

It is hoped that the plan will solve the remaining issues the Kingdom faces and result in a positive evaluation in the ninth round of progress reports by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). A positive result should see Cambodia moved off FATF’s money laundering “grey list”.

The meeting was held on March 3 with the minister leading a review and discussing the progress of working groups which were focussed on implementing “Immediate Outcomes” 6, or IO.6, on Financial Intelligence, IO.11 on proliferation of financial sanctions, and IO.7 and 8, which involve investigation, prosecution and confiscation in money-laundering crimes.

The minister called on each working group to identify specific challenges it may face.

“The ad-hoc sub-commission will continue its work until Cambodia is lifted off the grey list,” he added.

The working groups are currently disseminating laws on anti-financing of the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and laws on anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism to all relevant ministries and institutions to fulfil the conditions set by the Asia/Pacific Group.

Cambodia was relisted in the “grey list” of the FATF in February 2019, a decision that Cambodian officials called “unfair”. The Kingdom had previously met all of the necessary requirements and been removed from the list in 2015.

Officials said the relisting was due to new evaluation standards that came into force in 2013. To meet these new requirements, Cambodia introduced two new laws and improved several legal standards.

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