Member states reject Commission’s blacklist of money launderers

EU member states rejected on Thursday (7 March) the European Commission’s blacklist of countries unwilling to cooperate in the fight against money laundering and terrorism financing, as they blamed the EU executive of not being transparent during the drafting process.

In a statement adopted unanimously by the ministers of Interior and Justice, the Council said that it cannot support the Commission’s proposal given that it was “not established in a transparent and resilient process that actively incentivises affected countries to take decisive action while also respecting their right to be heard”.

The rejected new blacklist includes 23 countries, compared with the previous one of 16 jurisdictions. Saudi Arabia, Panama and four US territories (American Samoa, U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico and Guam) were some of the names added to the group.

The Commission also went further than the Financial Action Task Force, an inter-governmental body specialized in financial crimes, whose list contains 12

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