THE LIMITS OF NEW FATF STANDARDS ON ASSESSING WMD FINANCING RISK

A Commentary from RUSI on 3 December entitled “Two Steps Forward, One Step Back”, says that FATF now requires countries to assess proliferation financing risk, a welcome step in global efforts to counter sanctions evasion by actors such as North Korea. However, the narrow scope of the new requirement may reduce its effectiveness.  The article argues that, despite the good intentions, the narrow scope of the new requirement – focusing strictly on targeted financial sanctions – means that the amendment may not be as effective as it could be in helping governments and the private sector understand and address their proliferation financing risk exposure. 

https://rusi.org/commentary/two-steps-forward-one-step-back-limits-new-standards-assessing-wmd-financing-risk

[As an aside, when I was writing guidance and public notice information, and when speaking to colleagues and those in the business and legal communities, I always tried to adopt a broader interpretation of proliferation and proliferation financing risk.  One had, I argued, to include non-state actors and proliferation by states not directly affected by UN – or EU or US- sanctions, and the middlemen and facilitators in any preventive and due diligence work.  In fact, when the Isle of Man Government adopted a Policy Protocol – which I drafted and steered through to acceptance – this did not adopt a narrow definition of proliferation and proliferation financing risk.  I always sought to promote a “holistic” approach to all forms of AML/CFT/CFP matters and due diligence and compliance in general – if only to avoid the potential business and reputational risk.  Hence, I naturally agree with the theme of the RUSI Commentary]

https://www.gov.im/media/1356689/notice-1009-man-proliferation-and-proliferation-financing-risk-policy-pr-july-2020.pdf

I had omitted the following link (as it did not seem to generate much interest!), but it seemed time to add it again and say that, if you would like to make a (polite) gesture and help me with my removal and computer costs, I have a page at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

UN HAS GRANTED A SANCTIONS HUMANITARIAN TRAVEL EXEMPTION TO 3 MEMBERS OF GADAFI (QADAFI) FAMILY

On 1 December, a news release from the UN advised that the relevant UN Sanctions Committee had granted humanitarian travel exemption allowed for under UN SCR 1970 to Safia Farkash Al-Barassi, Aisha Muammar Muhammad Abu Minyar Qadhafi, and Mohammed Muammar Qadhafi.  These individuals may undertake unlimited travel for humanitarian purposes during 1 December to 31 May 2021. The conditions are that the travel information shall be provided by the individuals for information purposes of the Sanctions Committee prior to, and within 1 month after, travel; and any State(s) allowing any of the individuals to travel into or through their territories shall notify the Sanctions Committee within 48 hours after arrival or passage within their territory.  

https://www.un.org/press/en/2020/sc14369.doc.htm

I had omitted the following link (as it did not seem to generate much interest!), but it seemed time to add it again and say that, if you would like to make a (polite) gesture and help me with my removal and computer costs, I have a page at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

OFAC ADDS 1 INDIVIDUAL AND 1 ENTITY TO IRAN SANCTIONS LISTS

On 3 December, OFAC advised that it had added Mehran BABRI and the SHAHID MEISAMI GROUP to its Iran sanctions lists.  It is said that Shahid Meisami Group and its director are involved in Iran’s chemical weapons research and is subordinate to the Iranian Organization of Defensive Innovation and Research, aka SPND.  The US designated SPND in 2014 in connection with the Iranian regime’s proliferation of WMD or their means of delivery. 

https://home.treasury.gov/policy-issues/financial-sanctions/recent-actions/20201203

https://home.treasury.gov/news/press-releases/sm1200

I had omitted the following link (as it did not seem to generate much interest!), but it seemed time to add it again and say that, if you would like to make a (polite) gesture and help me with my removal and computer costs, I have a page at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

VIRTUAL CURRENCY MONEY LAUNDERING/TERRORIST FINANCING INDICATORS

FINTRAC in Canada has published a release concerned with indicators of possible money laundering etc where virtual currencies are involved and providing a list of such indicators.

https://www.fintrac-canafe.gc.ca/guidance-directives/transaction-operation/indicators-indicateurs/vc_mltf-eng

I had omitted the following link (as it did not seem to generate much interest!), but it seemed time to add it again and say that, if you would like to make a (polite) gesture and help me with my removal and computer costs, I have a page at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

RETAINED EU LAW: THE INCORPORATION OF EU LAW INTO UK LAW AT THE END OF THE TRANSITION PERIOD

On 3 December, Dentons published an article which says that the way in which current EU law will continue to apply in the UK will change fundamentally and some of its content will be modified as a result of Brexit.  Denton’s guide to retained EU law provides an overview of the framework within which EU law (as it stands on 31 December) becomes part of UK law, as well as the key differences, in order to aid understanding of retained EU law.

https://www.dentons.com/en/insights/alerts/2020/december/3/retained-eu-law-the-incorporation-of-eu-law-into-uk-law-at-the-end-of-the-transition-period

I had omitted the following link (as it did not seem to generate much interest!), but it seemed time to add it again and say that, if you would like to make a (polite) gesture and help me with my removal and computer costs, I have a page at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

US DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE ISSUES WHITE PAPER ON EU-US DATA TRANSFERS FOLLOWING SCHREMS II

On 3 December, an article from Hodgson Russ LLP reported that the US Department of Commerce issued recently a white paper addressing international data transfers pursuant to Standard Contractual Clauses (SCC) following the CJEU invalidation of the Privacy Shield in July.  The white paper addresses some of the issues with government access to data that the CJEU found problematic.  Overall, it says, the white paper provides useful material to companies relying on SCC.  It discusses the relevant law and has a number of citations to source documents that provide additional relevant information.  The guidance also suggests ways that companies can strengthen their SCC to demonstrate that an individual assessment of privacy protections has occurred.

https://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/department-of-commerce-issues-white-17979/

I had omitted the following link (as it did not seem to generate much interest!), but it seemed time to add it again and say that, if you would like to make a (polite) gesture and help me with my removal and computer costs, I have a page at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

HOW CHINESE ‘MONEY BROKERS’ LAUNDER CASH FOR MEXICAN DRUG CARTELS

On 3 December, Reuters reported that  Chinese “money brokers” have emerged as vital partners for Latin American drug cartels, becoming key cogs in their multi-billion-dollar empires and upending the way narcotics cash traditionally has been laundered, according to US authorities.  The article lays out a step-by-step explanation of a popular method Chinese brokers employ to launder US drug proceeds of Mexican crime groups.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-mexico-china-cartels-factbox/factbox-step-by-step-how-chinese-money-brokers-launder-cash-for-mexican-drug-cartels-idUSKBN28D1LW

I had omitted the following link (as it did not seem to generate much interest!), but it seemed time to add it again and say that, if you would like to make a (polite) gesture and help me with my removal and computer costs, I have a page at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

NEW REPORT TAKES STOCK OF PROGRESS FROM 2016 LONDON ANTI-CORRUPTION SUMMIT

On 3 December, Transparency International referred to a new report by Transparency International UK, “From Practice to Impact”, which tracks anti-corruption commitments made by 20 countries, including the UK. 

https://www.transparency.org.uk/sites/default/files/pdf/publications/From%20Practice%20to%20Impact%20-%20TIUK.pdf

Its findings include –

  1. 78% of the 169 commitments that have been monitored are ‘in play’, meaning that they have seen progress over the last 6 months; 
  2. 87.5% of commitments made on asset recovery (returning the proceeds of corruption to victims) are in play;
  3. 82% of commitments on public procurement (the purchasing of goods and services by government departments and public authorities) are in play;
  4. 71% c on beneficial ownership transparency (transparency over the real person who ultimately owns, controls or benefits from a company) are in play; and
  5. 91% of commitments on whistleblowing protection (protections for those who speak out to reveal neglect or abuses within the activities of an organisation) are in play.  

I had omitted the following link (as it did not seem to generate much interest!), but it seemed time to add it again and say that, if you would like to make a (polite) gesture and help me with my removal and computer costs, I have a page at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

US-LISTED CHINESE FIRMS CAN GET DELISTED UNDER NEW AUDIT LAW

The Financial Times has reported that the Holding Foreign Companies Accountable Act requires Chinese firms to give the US Public Company Accounting Oversight Board access to audited accounts — something that is now not allowed by China.  It will also force firms that are listed on US exchanges to prove that they are not controlled by a foreign government.  In August, the US Treasury and the SEC issued recommendations to ban Chinese firms from US exchanges unless they complied with US accounting standards.  The new legislation is part of a more general push by the US to take a more aggressive stance toward Beijing on economic areas including unequal market access to national security issues that are connected with spying and technology supply chains.

https://www.ft.com/content/fb33b46b-0ea6-42ca-9419-4c4b256974c7

I had omitted the following link (as it did not seem to generate much interest!), but it seemed time to add it again and say that, if you would like to make a (polite) gesture and help me with my removal and computer costs, I have a page at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

AUSTRALIA’S PLAN FOR $10,000 CASH BAN DROPPED

On 3 December, the Sydney Morning Herald reported that the Senate has officially dumped debate on the proposal that emerged from the government’s own black economy taskforce in 2017 as a way to crack down on organised criminals and those seeking to avoid tax.

https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/plan-for-10-000-cash-ban-dead-dead-and-dead-20201203-p56kck.html

I had omitted the following link (as it did not seem to generate much interest!), but it seemed time to add it again and say that, if you would like to make a (polite) gesture and help me with my removal and computer costs, I have a page at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y