(Q24N) Amid the controversy generated by the Panama Papers, the Financial Action Task Force in Latin America has recognized the efforts made by the country in issues of transparency.
From a statement issued by the Latin American Financial Action Task Force (GAFILAT):
“… Relationship of the current situation with the Evaluation of Panama:
Panama is a member of GAFILAT and as such will be evaluated in the context of the Fourth Round of Mutual Evaluations next year (2017), based on the schedule of assessments approved by the body. Recently. Panama has made considerable efforts to improve its AML / CFT system, which included the modification of its legal system, it has been recognized by FATF; It is important to note that these measures will be the subject of the next assessment to be made on that country.
The FATF was sufficiently concerned regarding the serious deficiencies of Panama, which in 2014 was the subject of special scrutiny and publicly listed because of these shortcomings. Since then, the FATF International Cooperation Review Group (ICRG for short) conducted a review of the significant actions taken by the Government of Panama to address these deficiencies, among which include:
• Laws to fully criminalize money laundering and terrorist financing, in April 2015;
• Regulations issued in December 2014 to restrict bearer shares, by requiring identification of the final beneficiary of corporations when opening bank accounts;
• Regulations issued in August 2015 to cover 14 sectors including real estate, legal services and money transmitters.
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