Malacañang

Malacañang wants urgent enactment of nat’l anti-money laundering strategy

Dwight de Leon

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Malacañang wants urgent enactment of nat’l anti-money laundering strategy

Rice micro-retailers receive P15,000 subsidy from the Department of Social Welfare and Development during the cash assistance payout at Carbon Market in Cebu City on September 14, 2023.

Jacqueline Hernandez/Rappler

Since 2021, the Philippines has been on the gray list of a global money-laundering watchdog for failing to address the gaps in its crackdown on money laundering and terrorism financing

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang issued a memorandum on Monday, October 16, directing concerned government bodies to urgently implement its national anti-money laundering strategy to meet international standards.

Memorandum Circular No. 37 tasks the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) to report to Executive Secretary Lucas Bersamin’s office by December 8 the status of the National Anti-Money Laundering, Counter-Terrorism Financing and Counter-Proliferation Financing Strategy (NACS) 2023 to 2027.

The AMLC is also directed to lead a working group that would formulate guidelines on the enactment of the memo circular.

The Presidential Communications Office released the memo to the media on Wednesday, October 18.

Why did Malacañang release this memo?

The Duterte administration in 2018 came up with the NACS 2018 to 2022 to craft a coordinated approach in combating money laundering and terrorism financing in the Philippines.

Despite that, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) – a global money laundering watchdog – placed the Philippines on its gray list in 2021 for failing to address gaps in its crackdown on money laundering and terrorism financing.

The watchdog essentially affirmed an evaluation report conducted in 2019 by the Asia Pacific Group (APG) on Money Laundering, a regional inter-governmental body in which the Philippines is a member.

The FATF gave the Philippines a January 2023 deadline to get out of that list, and the country was later granted a one-year extension, or until January 2024, due to the still numerous outstanding deficiencies in anti-money laundering controls.

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said earlier this year that FATF flagged the low number of cases and convictions against money launderers.

In July, Marcos issued Executive Order 33, amending Duterte’s order, and adjusting the NACS from the period of 2018 to 2022, to the period of 2023 to 2027.

Memo Circular No. 37 says the APG is expected to evaluate the Philippines’ anti-money laundering record in 2026. – Rappler.com

Marcos dummy for money laundering held 8 million francs in Swiss bank until 2006

Marcos dummy for money laundering held 8 million francs in Swiss bank until 2006

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Dwight de Leon

Dwight de Leon is a multimedia reporter who covers President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., the Malacañang, and the Commission on Elections for Rappler.