Pakistan’s removal from FATF grey list

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By Zaheer-ud-din Babar

Karachi: Pakistan is still on FATF’s grey list, but chances of its removal from list are bright. Financial Action Task Force said in their statement “Country may be removed from list after on-site visit to verify implementation of its reforms on countering terror financing mechanisms”. International Atomic Energy Agency has also acknowledged that Pakistan has complied with all FATF requirements. Prime Minister has congratulated entire nation on FATF’s praise of Pakistan’s performance.

Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa also termed completion of FATF action plans as a great achievement and performance of cell in GHQ and collective efforts of nation were commendable.

In fact, it is no secret that FATF was committed to policy of keeping Pakistan on gray list as part of a deliberate strategy. We should also not forget that India is also a member of FATF, which does not miss any opportunity to create problems for Pakistan.  It is true that the previous government may have tried to get Pakistan out of FATF but manner in which coalition government is trying is also certainly commendable.  Minister of State of External Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar categorically recognised role of administration of previous government in matter of FATF.  One proof of this is that DG ISPR stated in an interview in 2019 that there is coordination between no more than 30 ministries and departments to get out of FATF grey list. Efforts to meet demands of FATF have yielded positive results, with Pakistan recovering Rs 58 million. According to experts, Pakistan also overcame shortcomings in fiscal policy and practice.

Question is, what good would it do for Pakistan if it got out of FATF grey list? Majority of FATF members are from Western countries, so growing relations between Pakistan and China do not please these countries in any way.