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Opinions & Interviews

14 Nov 2018

Opinion: Belarus is low-risk country for terrorism financing

Opinion: Belarus is low-risk country for terrorism financing

MINSK, 14 November (BelTA) – Belarus is a low-risk country for terrorism financing, Vyacheslav Reut, Director of the Financial Monitoring Department of the State Control Committee of Belarus, told the media ahead of the meeting of the CIS council of heads of financial intelligence units, BelTA has learned.

“Belarus is a low-risk country for terrorism financing. Yet, Belarus is a transit country and its national financial system may be taken advantage of. Together with our colleagues we monitor possible ways of money transfer, because the beneficiary may reside in another country while Belarus may be used as a transit conduit. This is what the council has been set up for, namely to maintain cooperation between relevant authorities of the CIS countries,” Vyacheslav Reut said.

Much work has been done in Belarus to counteract money laundering and terrorism financing. “Belarusian specialists have a great expertise. Their opinions carry considerable weight not only in the CIS but also in the world. We do have things worth showing to others and things to aspire to,” Vyacheslav Reut noted.

As part of the 29th Plenary Week of the Eurasian group on combating money laundering and financing of terrorism (EAG), a workshop on preparation of Belarus for mutual evaluation of the national anti-money laundering system has been organized on the initiative of the Belarusian State Control Committee, its press service reported. The main stage of the evaluation is to take place in March of 2019 as the country will host a mission of EAG evaluators. The results of the evaluation of the national system to counter money laundering, financing of terrorism and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction have an impact on the further functioning of the Belarusian financial system. Positive evaluation will enhance the country’s credit and other ratings. Negative evaluation could lead to the application of relevant measures: from enhanced monitoring to the inclusion in the black list of the Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering (FATF). This international organization is developing criteria for assessing the national anti money laundering systems which are recognized by the entire international community

The previous evaluation was conducted in Belarus 10 years ago and generally had positive results. The current workshop is the third one since the beginning of the year. The EAG representatives will explain international evaluation procedures and requirements.

The workshop brought together 150 government officials and about 100 representatives from the private sector:banks, insurance companies, real estate registrars, notary officers, professional participants of the securities market, realtors, lawyers from Belarus and the EAG member states.

The national AML/CFT system includes the Office of the Prosecutor General, the National Bank, the Financial Monitoring Department of the State Control Committee, law enforcement and government authorities, representatives of the private sector.

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