Geographic Money Laundering

When talking about money laundering around the globe, it goes without saying that geography plays its part. There are countries notorious for money laundering. There are countries famous for anti-money laundering.

Banks should be cautious when working with clients from some countries without adequate anti-money laundering strategies. This often are countries with politically unstable regimes, high level of corruption and countries famous for drug producing or drug transit, as well as countries with vague anti-money laundering strategies.

The blacklists of money laundering countries published by different institutions and organizations can be used to see which geographic locations can be dangerous regarding this problem. The lists that can be used are as follows:

  • FATF (Financial Action Task Force) blacklist of high-risk for money laundering countries , FATF mutual evaluation reports;
  • OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) blacklist of countries for adverse tax practices;
  • World Bank & IMF (International Monetary Fund) reviews;
  • USA Patriot Act Section 311 “Special measures for jurisdictions, financial institutions, or international transactions of primary money laundering concern”;
  • US lists of terrorist sponsors, drug dealing countries

and some other lists.

Sometimes it is also good to be cautious when dealing with country that has been removed from a blacklist just recently.

So, geographic approach to countries can be useful, however money laundering itself is not a geographic phenomenon scattered about some locations – it can be existent absolutely anywhere in the world.

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