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Measure up

Barbados is falling short on implementing some agreed measures to counter dirty money and has been given until next month to tell its regional partners what it intends to do about it.

The Caribbean Financial Action Task Force, of which the island is a member, reported that while Barbados had made some progress in fixing several loopholes related to money laundering, it was failing in some critical areas.

Concerns include the absence of measures to adequately monitor international trusts and regulate “money value transfer service providers”.

“The main means of achieving compliance consist of proposed revision of anti-money laundering guidelines, developing amendments to relevant laws, and discussions among the appropriate competent authorities with regard to the monitoring regime for international trusts and the regulatory framework for money value transfer service providers,” the organisation said in its Seventh Follow-Up Report on Barbados.

“It is expected that definitive actions will result from these measures. Given the above, it is recommended that Barbados remains on expedited follow-up within the regular follow-up process and should report back to the plenary in November 2012.”

The upcoming meeting will be held between November 12 and 15 in the Virgin Islands.

The latest report on Barbados’ progress in introducing measures to battle money laundering is yet another outlining progress on the related third mutual evaluation report on the island, which was adopted in May 2008.

Barbados submitted six previous follow-up reports in May and October 2009, May and November 2010 and May and November 2011, and is expected to do the same next month.

Today, Barbados is partially compliant and not compliant in nine of 16 core and key recommendations, which is largely compliant or compliant on the remaining seven.

In terms of the non core or key recommendations, the island was rated partially compliant or non-compliant on 18.

“Since the MER, the authorities in Barbados began to assess the various means to achieve compliance,” the CFATF report noted.

“Some measures included legislative amendments to specific laws and proposals for new legislation. A new Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism Bill, a Corporate and Trust Service Providers Bill, the Transnational Organised Crime (Prevention and Control) Bill and the Prevention of Corruption Bill were finalised and approved by Cabinet.”

Outstanding recommendations included “a legislative requirement for financial institutions to determine who are the natural persons that ultimately control the customer, and the extension of the enforceability of specific customer due diligence requirements from the licensees of the Central Bank and the (Financial Services Commission) to all financial institutions”.

Barbados is also being urged to “consider devising and applying mechanisms for dealing with dual jurisdictional conflicts and negotiating with the UK government for another Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty covering areas outside drugs dealing; and generally seek opportunities to progressively conclude MLAT’s with a broader range of countries”.

“At present, the authorities are in the process of reviewing the measures in light of existing regimes and the requirements of the recommendations. As a result, the two recommendations remain outstanding,” the report noted. (SC)

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