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France Backs New FATF Standards

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

French Finance Minister François Baroin has welcomed the adoption of the new Financial Action Task Force (FATF) anti-money laundering (AML) standards following a lengthy process undertaken in close consultation with the private sector and civil society.

Underscoring the great importance that France attaches to combating money laundering and the financing of terrorism, the French minister pointed out that France has already shown itself to be exemplary in its commitment to the ongoing fight. During a recent evaluation by the FATF, France was ranked among the three best performing countries in this field, Fillon noted.

François Baroin welcomed in particular the advances aimed at strengthening the effectiveness of the FATF in its mission to protect the integrity of the financial system against illicit activities, notably the inclusion of tax fraud in the range of offences, the strengthening of controls for public officials, susceptible, due to their particular roles and responsibilities, to a risk of corruption.

The minister also accorded specific praise to the decision to extend the standards to include combating the financing of the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, and welcomed both the increased requirement for all states in terms of transparency of corporations and trusts, and measures to improve international cooperation and information exchange as well as to strengthen the power of public authorities.

Baroin emphasized that the progress was the result of works carried out notably under the French presidency of the G20, within the framework of the priority France accorded to the fight against jurisdictions deemed to be non-cooperative and to the prevention of corruption.

The minister underlined his determination to ensure that the new standards are implemented in full and urged the FATF to be particularly vigilant during its next evaluation cycle.