Home Latest News Pakistan Committed to Reforming Financial Sector to Strengthen Economy: Bilawal

Pakistan Committed to Reforming Financial Sector to Strengthen Economy: Bilawal

Foreign minister says FATF’s decision to begin process for country’s whitelisting is a result of ‘concerted’ national efforts

by Newsweek Pakistan

Photo courtesy PPP Media Cell

Pakistan is committed to continuing the positive trajectory of reforming its financial sector as part of a larger strategic objective of strengthening the national economy, Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari said on Sunday.

In a statement issued by the Foreign Office, the minister welcomed the Paris-based Financial Action Task Force (FATF)’s “unanimous acknowledgment” of the completion of two action plans by Islamabad. “I would like to commend the hard work and dedicated efforts of Pakistan’s FATF team that have led to the successful completion of all technical requirements of both FATF Action Plans,” he said. “This was the result of concerted national efforts and complete harmony of interests by all stakeholders,” he added.

Hailing the announcement of an on-site visit by the FATF to confirm Pakistan’s economic reforms as a “welcome” development, he said it reflected the progress made by the country to enhance the effectiveness of its anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism regime.

“The Government of Pakistan is committed to continue this positive trajectory of reforming the financial sector as part of its larger strategic objective of strengthening Pakistan’s economy,” he stressed. “I am certain that this good news from FATF will restore confidence in Pakistan’s economy and act as a catalyst for sustained growth and development,” he said.

“Let me reiterate the Government of Pakistan’s high level commitment to continue aligning our AML/CFT regime with global standards,” he said. “We look forward to the on-site visit and a successful and early culmination of the process leading to Pakistan’s exit from the grey list,” he added.

Since the FATF decided to begin the process to remove Pakistan from its greylist, there has been a lot of chatter about who should claim credit for this achievement, with the ousted Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf saying this is its accomplishment, even as members of the incumbent government and the military have also claimed credit.

In a press conference, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar said that this was a “national” victory, adding that anyone and everyone who wanted to claim credit for it was welcome to do so. Meanwhile, the Inter-Services Public Relations posted a message attributed to Chief of Army Staff Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa in which he said the “monumental” effort to get Pakistan whitelisted was thanks to the joint efforts of civil and military institutions. “Core cell at GHQ, which steered the national effort, and civil-military team, which synergized implementation of action plan, made it possible, making Pakistan proud,” he said.

While the FATF has not yet announced a firm date for its on-site visit, Khar said the government hoped to schedule it within the next few weeks to ensure it could be taken up by the Paris-based watchdog in its next plenary meeting during October.

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