Thursday, May 9, 2013

Nepal to take part in regional review group face-to-face

Nepal will participate in the regional review group face-to-face in Bangkok.
Law secretary Bhesh Raj Sharma will lead a Nepali delegation that will apprise the review meeting of the latest developments in the country regarding the amendment to the Assets Laundry Prevention Act 2008, apart from bringing Proceeds of Crime Bill that will help in the management of seized property and give enough teeth to authorities to fight organised crime.
The country will present its ongoing reforms and apprise the meeting of the implementation of Action Plan — which are in the pipeline.
Nepal had escaped being blacklisted due to the last minute approval of the Organised Crime Bill on February 15. However, the next plenary and working group meeting of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) in Oslo, Norway, on June 17-21, will again review the country's status.
FATF, which is a global standard setting body for anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT), has kept Nepal under continuous observation as it has repeatedly failed to fulfil international commitments in the fight against the flow of dirty money.
Earlier too, FATF had shown concerns on Nepal's slow response to UN Security Council resolutions like terrorist financing, seizing, freezing and confiscation of organised crime assets.
By the June meeting, the country must approve the remaining Bill Against Organised Crime — the last one among Nepal's promised three Acts — apart from amendment of the Assets Laundry Prevention Act and Proceeds of Crime Bill to escape being blacklisted.
The country had already been placed under the high-risk and non-cooperative jurisdictions — which means almost blacklisted — in October 2012 for AML/CFT deficiencies and no substantial progress on FATF's 40+9 recommendations that can also help combat corruption.

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