26 November 2020 – Today, the Financial Action Task Force concluded the four-day annual Joint Experts’ Meeting, attended by approximately 400 experts from both public and private sector around the world.
The FATF attaches great importance to effective information sharing, which is one of the cornerstones of a well-functioning AML/CFT framework. Ensuring that countries have strong tools to fight money laundering, terrorist financing or the financing of proliferation, requires an in-depth understanding of the evolving risks and the latest detection, investigation and prosecution techniques.
To share the latest risks findings, find solutions and inform ongoing FATF projects, the FATF holds annual Joint Experts’ Meetings. These meetings bring together experts from various governments agencies from around the world as well as international bodies such as the United Nations, IMF, World Bank and Interpol.
During the four-day meeting, experts discussed and advanced various priority projects under the FATF German Presidency for 2020-2022. Participants exchanged views, shared insights, and learnt about current good practices on issues that included:
- Financing of ethnically or radically motivated terrorism - Participants discussed the financing of recent ethnically or racially motivated terrorist attacks and groups, as well as national experiences in countering this risk. The session also focused on transnational links and the evolving threat environment.
- Environmental crime - Experts shared their experience and findings from money laundering cases linked to illegal logging and land clearance, mining related crimes and waste trafficking. Participants noted the important role of export companies, refiners, logistics and other non-traditional sectors in detecting anomalies and illicit financial flows from these crimes.
- Illicit arms trafficking and terrorist financing – Experts presented the international legal framework on preventing terrorist access to arms and broader provisions covering illicit arms trafficking. Participants also focused on the linkages between illicit arms trafficking and terrorist financing and the need for national risk assessments to address these risks.
- Digital transformation – Experts shared their experiences of using advanced analytics such as text mining, privacy preserving technology, online analytical processing and social network analysis in the fight against money laundering and terrorist financing; and how technology could increase operational efficiency in identifying and disrupting suspicious activities.
In his opening remarks, FATF President Marcus Pleyer highlighted that during these unprecedented times, it is more important than ever for AML/CFT experts to keep up to date with the evolving risk landscape and to enhance their international co-operation.
The fight against illicit finance also includes those on the front line. This week’s meetings welcomed representatives from private sector and civil society. Their insights allow the FATF to better understand the challenges they are facing and to then design the tools and mechanisms that will be most effective in the fight against money laundering and terrorist financing.
This week’s discussions will inform FATF’s ongoing work, which will be discussed further at the February 2021 Plenary.