[www.inewsguyana.com] – The Special Select Committee on the Anti – Money Laundering and Countering of Financing of Terrorism Amendment Bill is slated to meet on Monday, October 21.
This is according to Finance Minister, Dr. Ashni Singh. In a statement, Dr. Singh is calling on the Opposition to place the integrity of Guyana’s financial system above partisan politics by ensuring the passage of the Bill.
“The Government of Guyana has made exhaustive efforts to involve and accommodate the Opposition via a number attempts to meet as frequently as possible in the Select Committee, of the National Assembly, to discuss the bill,” Dr. Singh said.
He explained that government offered to meet with the Opposition in the Committee on two occasions so far but those efforts have been futile.
The Finance Minister reiterated that the passage of this Bill is important to the economic sustainability of Guyana since it will demonstrate to international banks and lending agencies that Guyana’s financial system is credible, stable and accountable.
“The Private Sector Commission’s (PSC) recent call for support of the Bill echoes the concerns raised by Government regarding the impact of Guyana’s economy should these vital pieces of legislation be delayed further: non passage of the bill will delay business transaction and drive the prices of commodities and services upward. The consequences of such a delay will transfer to the common man,” Dr. Singh stated.
He further explained that one example of these consequences will be felt by recipients of remittances.
“Because financial institutions will be subjected to intensified scrutiny and increased penalty fees for operating in a non-compliant country, those increased fees will be incurred by the consumer.”
The minority political party – the Alliance for Change – has publicly stated that they will not support the Bill unless the Public Procurement Commission is established, while A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) has made it clear that they are in no rush to pass the Bill.