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Attorney General says CFATF report unfair

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This country’s 2004 Mutual Evaluation Process report by the CFATF was unfair, as too much emphasis was placed on the production of marijuana and the effect of its proceeds on the economy.

Speaking to participants at the opening of the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) Training Seminar last Wednesday, Attorney General Judith Jones-Morgan said that it was this Government’s view that enough emphasis was not placed on the effects of our law enforcement agencies in tackling the problems.{{more}}

The seminar, held in conjunction with the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, was held under the theme “Preparing for a Mutual Evaluation Mission”, and was geared towards helping this country and others in CFATF get ready for their upcoming Mutual Evaluation Processes.

St Vincent and the Grenadines’ next evaluation is scheduled for February 2008.

As Jones-Morgan addressed those gathered at the Methodist Church Hall, she applauded the strides made by the ULP administration in the area of the regularizing of the financial services sector since it took office in 2001.

She said that the Government had to clean up the black list and administrate the chaos and legislative bundle that existed.

She credited the former International Financial Services Authority’s (IFSA) director Louise Mitchell-Joseph for helping to create an environment in which the financial services sector in St Vincent and the Grenadines could become synonymous with a top quality financial jurisdiction and professionalism. “The focus of IFSA is to continue to improve and maintain a positive profile of St Vincent and the Grenadines as an international financial destination and to ensure that the industry is well regulated,” she said.

Jones-Morgan also had high praise for the work being done by the Financial Intelligence Unit, under the leadership of Sharda Sinanan-Bollers.

She said that the FIU was working steadfastly at the goal of putting criminals out of business “by draining all their resources”.

Bollers, who also addressed the opening of the workshop, said that she was delighted to see the high level of participation at the workshop. She also expressed her pleasure at seeing a large turn out from other regional countries.

The Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) is an organization of thirty states in the Caribbean Basin, which have agreed to implement common countermeasures to address the problem of criminal money laundering.

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