New Amendments For Money Laundering Issues Including 10 Years Prison And 5m Fine
A bill against money-laundering (Amendment) 2019, prescribing punishment for perpetrators and outlining processes to cope with these offences by the national parliament on Tuesday, was endorsed by the National Assembly's Standing Committee on Finance to fulfill the Financial Action Task Force on curbing money-laundering demands.
According to the approved Bill, money laundering violators are liable to a penalty of up to 10 years rather than the past two years and Rs5 million in fine up from the previous Rs1 m estimate.
Furthermore, for 180 days, up from prior 90 days, the investigating officer shall be granted retention of the individual and no warrant of detention from the tribunal shall be required. Authorities will also confiscate the property of the offender.
The parliamentary house of Islamabad, chaired by Asad Umar, today hosted a session of the commission. During a briefing to the Committee, Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) General Director Bashir Memon called for changes in the draft bill as mentioned above.
State Bank representatives attending the event had told committee participants that the money laundering offense must be recorded instantly under the circumstances given by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). They warned against bank staff who lodge suspicious transactions accounts in error and also against those who do not report them.
The Committee also approved the Bill for Foreign Exchange Regulations, which controls the exchange of foreign currency. If an individual wants to submit or obtain a maximum of $10,000, approval from the State Bank must first be requested.
In the course of the session, the participants of the committee voiced their doubts about the FATF guidelines on curbing money laundering. The views of Ayesha Ghous Pasha was:
"having turned FATF into a shield, the authorities were implementing an 'overkill' when it came to responsive measures".
"Where in the world does this occur, that an individual is barred from carrying foreign currency from one city to the other?"
Asad Umer replied to this,
"FATF is giving us biased treatment. It is telling Pakistan to do what is done nowhe5re else in the world."
In the meantime, Pakistan has prevented the Blacklist of FATF, but there is October time limit when it must report to the world economic watchdog that its own action plan against terrorist financing has been effectively put in place.
Pakistan has now had two significant duties ahead of it, which has conducted a significant diplomatic campaign to prevent black listings.
The first is to convince FATF of its action strategy by October. The second is to enter the grey list of the monitored countries to secure conformity by winning over 15 of 36 FATF participants.
Pakistan has lately taken a amount of important initiatives to fight terrorist funding and cash laundering that have also helped persuade FATF members to stop blacklisting Islamabad.
The steps include prohibiting monetary transactions without a national taxation number, disallowing the open market conversion of more than$500 without submitting a copy of a national identification card, prohibiting and taking away the assets of a militant group like Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JUD).