Tue, Nov 06, 2018 - Page 12 News List

Taiwan seeks ‘substantial’ rating in APG evaluations

By Kao Shih-ching  /  Staff reporter

In a bid to make its way back onto the Asia/Pacific Group on Money Laundering’s (APG) “regular follow-up list,” Taiwan needs to get at least five “substantial” ratings in the third round of mutual evaluations, Anti-Money Laundering Office Executive Secretary Yu Li-chen (余麗貞) said yesterday.

Asked about the nation’s progress on the first day of the evaluations, Yu said “it seems that we have had a good beginning” as the interviews ended earlier than scheduled.

That means the financial institutions taking part in the interviews have given clear answers to the group, she added.

The group is to mark the 11 effectiveness ratings “high,” “substantial,” “moderate,” or “low,” also known as the “immediate outcomes,” Yu said on the sidelines of a ceremony for the evaluations at Hua Nan Financial Holdings Co’s (華南金控) headquarters in Taipei.

If Taiwan achieves the substantial level in at least five items, the nation might be put back on the “regular follow-up list,” Yu said.

In a practice evaluation that ended in April, Taiwan achieved a substantial level of effectiveness for four items — understanding money laundering and terrorist financing risks, international cooperation, appropriately using the financial intelligence information for money laundering and terrorist financing investigations, and preventing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction — she said.

The nation also performed well on confiscating crime income and preventing terrorists from abusing non-proft organizations, achieving a “moderate” rating, Yu said.

The government could not confiscate the income of crime if the money has been spent on goods, such as on a supercar, as there was no good definition of “crime income” in law, Yu said, adding that she expects the nation to get better ratings as the government can confiscate crime income after amendments to the Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act (國際刑事司法互助法).

If Taiwan retains the ratings and achieves higher ratings on two other items, “it is possible that we can be put on the regular follow-up list,” she said.

The Anti-Money Laundering Office said that the APG delegation is today to evaluate whether Taiwan appropriately uses financial intelligence information for money laundering and terrorist financing investigations, preventing terrorists from abusing the non-profit organization sector and preventing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

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