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The Philippines Hopes To Exit The FATF Grey List By The End Of The Year

The Philippines is bullish on exiting the FATF grey list this year. To that end, the country’s president, Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr has asked all government agencies to fix the regulatory shortcomings identified by the Financial Action Task Force.

According to reports, Marcos’ directive was communicated to agencies during a recent meeting. During that meeting, the President highlighted the economic importance of exiting the grey list. For reference, the Philippines originally had to convince the FATF that it should be removed from the grey list by January 2023. However, this period was extended by 12 months, providing the country with more time to address its shortcomings.

Matthew David, the executive director of the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) Secretariat, commented on the matter, saying that the President has “reiterated the government’s commitment” to addressing the deficiencies identified by the FATF.

David confirmed that the country hopes to address all of the points made by the task force in 2024 and trigger the country’s exit from the grey list by the end of the year. According to him, 10 of the 18 deficiencies identified by the FATF have already been addressed. The remaining eight are currently being addressed or not yet addressed.

David admitted that the Philippines still needs to properly tackle terrorism financing.

The Philippines Is Optimistic about Its Exit While there is a lot more work to do, David said that the Philippine government believes that it is on the right track. According to him, the President is very content with the work of the AMLC.

In his interview with the Philippine News Agency, David said:

Our goal is to eventually exit the grey list. There are repercussions for being in the grey list because the longer we are in the grey list, the bigger the possibility or the higher risk that we will enter the black list.

Matthew David, exec director, AMLC Secretariat In October, the Philippine government published Memorandum Circular No. 37, ordering 44 government agencies to work on addressing the 18 deficiencies outlined in the FATF’s report. A number of authorities, including the PAGCOR, were thus required to step up their AML efforts.

In line with its efforts to strengthen its regulations, the Philippines also joined forces with China to crack down on illegal offshore operators in the country. This followed a joint action between the two countries that resulted in the repatriation of 400 Chinese nationals.

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