Head of US Delegation to FATF Scott Rembrandt arrives in Pakistan

Scott Rembrandt, Head of the US Delegation to the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), arrived in Pakistan on Tuesday on a three-day visit aimed at discussing the country’s action plan agreed with the forum.

Rembrandt also serves as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Strategic Policy in the Office of Terrorist Financing and Financial Crimes at the US Department of the Treasury.

He is likely to meet Pakistani officials working on the FATF’s action plan for the country.

Rembrandt is also expected to discuss Islamabad’s progress on the issue of terror financing and money laundering, one of FATF’s key concerns.

In July, the US asked Pakistan to expeditiously implement its new second action plan, while recognising Islamabad’s efforts in satisfying obligations that would help its case with the FATF.

In June, Pakistan was kept on the FATF’s increased monitoring list — also called the grey list — after having met 26 of the 27 items on the action plan.

It was also asked to work on “the deficiencies later identified in Pakistan’s 2019 Asia Pacific Group (APG) Mutual Evaluation Report (MER)”.

In August, it was reported that Pakistan is now ‘compliant’ or ‘largely compliant’ in 35 of the 40 recommendations put forth by the APG, according to the follow-up MER, an upgrade from the previous assessment in which the country met 31 out of the 40 points in the action plan.

However, the country will stay on the “enhanced follow-up”, and continue to report back to the APG.

Pakistan has to meet all deficiencies identified in the APG action plan as well as one remaining item in the Financial Action Task Force (FATF)’s action plan to move off the ‘grey list’.

“Pakistan has 35 Recommendations rated C/LC (compliant/largely compliant),” said the APG in the ‘3rd Follow-Up Report Mutual Evaluation of Pakistan July 2021’.

“Pakistan will remain on enhanced follow-up, and will continue to report back to the APG on progress to strengthen its implementation of AML/CFT (anti money-laundering/combating the financing of terrorism) measures. Pakistan’s fourth progress report is due 1 February 2022.”

Pakistan has been on the monitoring list since 2018 along with several other countries with deficiencies in the AML/CFT regime.