North Korea, Iran lead latest list of countries falling short in combatting terrorist financing

The latest list of countries and other jurisdictions that fall short in combatting the financing of terrorists – including North Korea and Iran – was released Friday by the Treasury’s arm for fighting financial crimes.

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) issued the updated list of jurisdictions with strategic anti-money laundering and combatting the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) deficiencies. “Financial institutions should be aware of these changes, which may affect their obligations and risk-based approaches with respect to these jurisdictions,” notes the advisory, FIN-2019-A001.

The advisory also reminds financial institutions of the “status and obligations” involving these jurisdictions, in particular the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) and Iran.

Regarding the DPRK, the agency said its Financial Action Task Force (FATF) “remains concerned by the DPRK’s failure to address the significant deficiencies in its anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) regime and the serious threats they pose to the integrity of the international financial system. The FATF urges the DPRK to immediately and meaningfully address its AML/CFT deficiencies. Further, the FATF has serious concerns with the threat posed by the DPRK’s illicit activities related to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and its financing.”

Regarding Iran, the FATF stated that there are still items of Iran’s Action Plan that are not completed and the country should fully address. “If by June 2019, Iran does not enact the remaining legislation in line with FATF Standards, then the FATF will require increased supervisory examination for branches and subsidiaries of financial institutions based in Iran. The FATF also expects Iran to continue to progress with enabling regulations and other amendments.”

Other countries on the FinCEN list with strategic AML/CFT regime deficiencies include: The Bahamas, Botswana, Cambodia (which was recently added), Ethiopia, Ghana, Pakistan, Serbia, Sri Lanka, Syria, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, and Yemen.

FinCEN Issues Advisory on the FATF-Identified Jurisdictions with AML/CFT Deficiencies