Money laundering methods and techniques change in response to developing counter-measures. In recent years, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) 1 has noted increasingly sophisticated combinations of techniques, such as the increased use of legal persons to disguise the true ownership and control of illegal proceeds, and an increased use of professionals to provide advice andassistance in laundering criminal funds. These factors, combined with the experience gained through the FATF‟s Non-Cooperative Countries and Territories process, and a number of national and international initiatives, led the FATF to review and revise the Forty Recommendations into a new comprehensive framework for combating money laundering and terrorist financing. The FATF now calls upon allcountries to take the necessary steps to bring their national systems for combating money laundering and terrorist financing into compliance with the new FATF Recommendations, and to effectively implement these measures. The review process for revising the Forty Recommendations was an extensive one, open to FATF members, non-members, observers, financial and other affected sectors and interestedparties. This consultation process provided a wide range of input, all of which was considered in the review process. The revised Forty Recommendations now apply not only to money laundering but also to terrorist financing, and when combined with the Eight Special Recommendations on Terrorist Financing provide an enhanced, comprehensive and consistent framework of measures for combating moneylaundering and terrorist financing. The FATF recognises that countries have diverse legal and financial systems and so all cannot take identical measures to achieve the common objective, especially over matters of detail. The Recommendations therefore set minimum standards for action for countries to implement the detail according to their particular circumstances and constitutional frameworks. TheRecommendations cover all the measures that national systems should have in place within their criminal justice and regulatory systems; the preventive measures to be taken by financial institutions and certain other businesses and professions; and international co-operation. The original FATF Forty Recommendations were drawn up in 1990 as an initiative to combat the misuse of financial systems bypersons laundering drug money. In 1996 the Recommendations were revised for the first time to reflect evolving money laundering typologies. The 1996 Forty Recommendations have been endorsed by more than 130 countries and are the international antimoney laundering standard. In October 2001 the FATF expanded its mandate to deal with the issue of the financing of terrorism, and took the important stepof creating the Eight Special Recommendations on Terrorist Financing. These Recommendations contain a set of measures aimed at combating the funding of terrorist acts and terrorist organisations, and are complementary to the Forty Recommendations2. A key element in the fight against money laundering and the financing of terrorism is the need for countries systems to be monitored and evaluated,with respect to these international standards. The mutual evaluations conducted by the FATF and FATF-style regional bodies, as well as the assessments conducted by the IMF and World Bank, are a vital mechanism for ensuring that the FATF Recommendations are effectively implemented by all countries.
The FATF is an inter-governmental body which sets standards, and develops and promotespolicies to combat money laundering and terrorist financing. It currently has 36 members: 34 countries and governments and two international organisations; and more than 20 observers: five FATF-style regional bodies and more than 15 other international organisations or bodies. A list of all members and observers can be found on the FATF website at www.fatf-gafi.org. 2 The FATF Forty and Eight Special...
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