Mauritius exits the FATF List of Jurisdictions Under Increased Monitoring

At its October 2021 Plenary, the FATF concluded that Mauritius would no longer be  subject to increased monitoring by the FATF. The FATF welcomes Mauritius’s significant  progress in improving its AML/CFT regime. Mauritius has strengthened the effectiveness  of its AML/CFT regime and addressed related technical deficiencies to meet the  commitments in its action plan regarding the strategic deficiencies that the FATF identified  in February 2020. Mauritius is therefore no longer subject to the FATF’s increased  monitoring process. Mauritius will continue to work with ESAAMLG to improve further  its AML/CFT system. 

In February 2020, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) decided that Mauritius should be  monitored under the formal FATF International Cooperation Review Group (ICRG) process as a  result of strategic deficiencies identified, by the FATF, in its anti-money laundering and  combating terrorism financing (AML/CFT) system. The FATF, accordingly, placed Mauritius on  its public document of “Jurisdictions under Increased Monitoring”, referred to as the “Grey  List”. 

At the same time, in order to exit that List, Mauritius was called upon by the FATF to implement  an Action Plan within agreed timelines, aimed at strengthening the effectiveness of its AML/CFT  system. The Action Plan included, amongst others, the implementation of risk based supervision  of the global business and Designated Non-Financial Businesses and Professions (DNFBPs) 

sector, timely access to accurate basic and beneficial ownership information by competent  authorities, providing training for the law enforcement agencies to conduct parallel financial  investigations, supervision of the NPO sector and adequate implementation of targeted financial  sanctions through outreach and supervision. 

At the beginning of June 2021, the FATF made the initial determination that “Mauritius has  substantially completed its Action Plan and warrants an on-site assessment to verify that the  implementation of Mauritius’ AML/CFT reforms has begun and is being sustained, and that the  necessary political commitment remains in place to sustain implementation in the future.” It is to  be highlighted that, in June 2021, Mauritius had largely addressed all the items on its Action  Plan, ahead of the agreed timelines. 

The Africa/Middle East Joint Group of the FATF undertook the onsite visit to Mauritius on 13 to  15 September 2021. Following the work sessions with the Mauritius delegation during the onsite  visit, the Joint Group confirmed that all the action items have been addressed by Mauritius, and  that the requisite conditions are in place for the reforms to be sustained and enhanced in the  future. 

During the ICRG process, Mauritius has worked closely with the FATF and the Eastern and  Southern Africa Anti-Money Laundering Group (ESAAMLG). Mauritius also benefited from  the technical assistance from the European Union through the EU AML/CFT Global Facility, the  German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ), UK, France, IMF, UNODC, the World  Bank and other friendly nations and international organizations which has assisted in improving  our AML/CFT framework.  

The private sector operators, as a key partner, has also been instrumental in the fight against  money laundering, terrorism and proliferation financing. The private sector has displayed an  unprecedented spirit of team work and very strong collaboration in the national effort to honor  our commitment to implement the Action Plan. 

At the time of the adoption of the Mutual Evaluation Report in July 2018, Mauritius was rated  largely compliant or compliant with only 14 of the 40 FATF recommendations. As a result of an  overhaul of the AML/CFT legal framework, Mauritius is now compliant or largely compliant  with 39 out of the 40 FATF Recommendations, following the recent adoption of three additional  technical compliance upgrades by the ESAAMLG Council of Ministers in September 2021.  

The Core Group on AML/CFT, chaired by the Financial Secretary and co-chaired by the  Governor of the Bank of Mauritius and the Director General of the Independent Commission  against Corruption, was instrumental in overseeing the preparations and implementation of the  Action Plan. The Core Group was initially set up to develop and coordinate the strategies,  policies and actions required to ensure the implementation of the recommended actions in the  2018 Mauritius Mutual Evaluation Report. The establishment of the Core Group has now been  enshrined in July 2021 in the Financial Intelligence and Anti-Money Laundering Act (FIAMLA),  to ensure sustainability and continuity in our AML/CFT strategy. 

All these measures demonstrate the unflinching commitment of the Government of Mauritius to  ensure the sustainability and effectiveness of its national strategy to combat money laundering,  terrorism financing and proliferation financing in the future, well beyond the ICRG process. The  Government reiterates its strong political commitment to sustain the AML/CFT reforms and the  fight against Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing. 

The FATF Plenary decision is a global acknowledgement of the effectiveness of the Mauritius  public and private sector institutions and their cooperation in combating money laundering and  terrorism finance.

The Government also reiterates its commitment to continue to work closely, and partner, with  ESAAMLG, and the international AML/CFT community, to further enhance the Mauritius  AML/CFT reforms as well as across the region.  

BOM Communiqué

21 October 2021 

At its October 2021 Plenary, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has decided to remove Mauritius  from its list of jurisdictions under increased monitoring.  

The FATF has welcomed the significant progress made by Mauritius in further improving its AML/CFT  regime, and in addressing related technical deficiencies to meet the commitments in its action plan  regarding the strategic deficiencies identified by the FATF in February 2020. 

This is a major development for Mauritius in its sustained fight against money laundering, terrorist  financing and proliferation financing. It further enhances confidence and trust in our banking sector  and the jurisdiction as an international financial centre. 

The Bank of Mauritius remains committed to continuously engage with all stakeholders to ensure  the sustainability and effectiveness of the AML/CFT system. 

Posted by on Oct 21 2021. Filed under Actualités, Economie, En Direct, Featured. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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