Jun 25, 2021 News
Kaieteur News – The Government of Guyana is currently engaged in a two-day virtual workshop facilitated by the World Bank, in completion of its second Anti-Money Laundering and Combatting the Financing of Terrorism and Proliferation Financing (AML/CFT/PF) National Risk Assessment (NRA). This workshop is facilitated in order to validate the findings of the Assessment.
Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs, Mr. Mohabir Anil Nandlall, SC MP, provided the opening remarks, thanking the World Bank for their technical assistance in the conduct of the NRA. Mr. Nandlall additionally noted that, despite the challenges faced due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Guyana has completed its second Assessment. He noted, also, the importance of the Assessment relative to the oil and gas sector; as Guyana has become an oil-producing nation, it is critical to ensure that the AML/CFT apparatus is adequate in addressing the risks and threats that Guyana may face.
Nandlall outlined that the Government of Guyana has boosted the country’s prosecutorial capacity, with a view to improving the effectiveness of investigations, prosecutions and convictions. The minister announced that Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) has recruited additional staff in the areas of law, forensic audit, accounting and investigations. Inter-agency cooperation between SOCU and the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) will also be improved, leading to an increase in the conclusion of money laundering related cases.
Kaieteur News understands that Guyana has already indentified a legislative agenda in order to remedy the deficiences in the AML/CFT Act and related legislation as identified by the NRA.
Guyana expects to improve its supervisory framework, as well as enable the expansion of the AML/CFT financial and commercial sphere, in order to bring unregulated entities under the sphere of compliance. The actions will further illustrate the intent to have a well-oiled machinery to protect Guyana’s financial sector.
A representative from World Bank, Mr. Klaudijo Stroligo, congratulated Guyana for the methods employed during the NRA, given the challenges faced globally by the COVID-19 pandemic, the representative also expressed his gratitude to the European Union for their financial contribution in funding the World Bank’s participation in the NRA process.
Day One of the Workshop consisted of presentations on the money laundering threats faced by Guyana, also encompassing assessments of the oil and gas sector, illegal wildlife trade, terrorism financing and proliferation financing risks. Day One concluded with presentations by the Banking and Insurance Sector, as well as a presentation relating to other non-bank Financial Institutions. The presenters included staff members of authorities such as the Bank of Guyana, the Financial Intelligence Unit, the Ministry of Natural Resources, Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, and the Attorney General’s Chambers
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