[www.inewsguyana.com] – The Plenary Meeting XL and Special Ministerial V Meeting of the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force commenced today, (November 24), in San Salvador, El Salvador.
Guyana is being represented at this meeting by Attorney General Anil Nandlall along with a team from the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU).
Guyana was required to provide an update of its position following the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) meeting in Paris, France in October.
The Attorney General provided that update; informing the meeting that Guyana has submitted an Action Plan after collaboration with the American Regional Review Group (ARRG).
This Action Plan was submitted and approved by FATF at the Paris meeting, where a High Level commitment was given by President Donald Ramotar; pledging Guyana’s commitment to implement this Action Plan.
At the ARRG engagement, after a presentation by the Attorney General Guyana was granted until September 2015 to implement the legislative measures and until May 2015 to implement the non-legislative measures. This recommendation was accepted at the FATF meeting in Paris.
The Attorney General further informed the meeting that the non-legislative measures are being implemented with dispatch and there is likelihood that these will be completed long before the May 2015 deadline. He recognised the assistance which Guyana continues to receive from the Diplomatic community in Guyana at various levels.
In relation to the legislative measures, the Attorney General pointed out that this is the area which continues to pose tremendous challenges to the Government of Guyana since up until the Paris meeting, the majority comprising of the joint opposition in the National Assembly refused to lend their support to the enactment of the AMLCFT (Amendment) Bill 2013 which captures all the requisite legislative measures.
He further pointed out that since the Paris meeting there has been some developments in that Parliament has since been prorogued because the joint Opposition was going to move and pass a no-confidence motion which would have resulted in dissolution of Parliament and general elections within three months. One of the grounds for the prorogation of the Parliament was to offer an opportunity by the President for the Government and the joint opposition to enter into constructive engagements in order to arrive at consensus on a number of national issues including the swift enactment of the AMLCFT (Amendment) Bill.
Nandlall emphasised that should no compromise be produced by this offer of the Government, then National Elections will be inevitable.
Meanwhile, many jurisdictions in the region have responded to the CFATF’s public statements by issuing directives and instructions to the relevant agencies within those jurisdictions informing of the status of Guyana and to continue to take measures or prepare themselves to take measures to protect themselves from the risks which Guyana poses or will pose should the situation deteriorate.
These jurisdictions include the British Virgin Islands, Bermuda, Curacao, Dominica, St. Maarten, Trinidad & Tobago, Turks & Caicos Islands, Jamaica, Bahamas, Barbados and Montserrat.