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Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Washington and EU lobby to remove UAE from financial ‘grey list’


Washington and EU countries have been lobbying international financial regulators to remove the UAE from the gray list, Politico Reported on June 21.

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) added Abu Dhabi to the list in March “on the basis of serious shortcomings in the UAE’s measures to combat sanctions evasion, terrorist financing and other crimes.”

The Gulf state has pledged “strong action” as the UAE’s status as a leading business hub is at risk.

However, the FATF International Cooperation Review Group (ICRG), tasked with tracking Abu Dhabi’s “progress”, said the UAE had “overpromised and under-delivered”, casting doubt on the reliability of the information they provided the ICRG’s assessment. .

according to PoliticoRepresentatives of the US and some EU countries on the review committee “refused to address” the ICRG’s concerns.

In May, the group’s Belgian representative, Michiel Vervloet, criticized what he said was a move to remove the UAE from the gray list despite the country’s lack of progress in preventing money laundering and other illegal activities.

His concerns were reportedly dismissed, with a German representative of the Berlin finance ministry insisting that the ICRG’s final ruling on the matter must be based on information provided by the UAE, even if it was inaccurate.

The German and UAE finance ministries, as well as the U.S. Treasury Department, declined or ignored requests for comment.

Italy’s central bank representative Roberto Angeletti suggested an “on-the-ground” visit to the UAE.this Politico The report describes it as “the final step in the assessment process that marks a country’s removal from the gray list.”

Germany, which recently signed an energy deal with the UAE, has been forced to “emergency inject gas” into the Gulf country due to a shortage of gas caused by sanctions on Russia, the report added.

Meanwhile, the US intends to show Saudi Arabia – which has recently distanced itself from Washington in favor of closer ties with Moscow, Beijing and Tehran – that “it has other powerful Arab friends”. Politico explain.

Nonetheless, the UAE is one of several regional countries deepen The relationship with Russia has therefore been strongly opposed by Washington and other countries, because they see it as evading sanctions.

The Paris-based Financial Action Task Force is meeting this week to issue an update on Abu Dhabi’s progress on financial integrity.

Other West Asian countries that have received FATF attention include turkey and Lebanon.


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