ASIA/PACIFIC EXPERTS MEET ON MONEY LAUNDERING

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News Release October 30, 2002

The fifth Typologies Workshop of the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG) was held this week in Vancouver, Canada to discuss and further efforts to improve money laundering countermeasures and regional cooperation.

The Workshop was attended by more than120 law enforcement and regulatory experts from 28 jurisdictions and seven international and regional organisations.

The APG is a regional anti-money laundering group committed to fighting money laundering and terrorist financing in the Asia/Pacific region. The Workshop focused on current money laundering methods and trends in the region. Special attention was given to:

· the use of underground banking and alternative remittance systems to launder money; and

· tracing the proceeds of crime and terrorist financing; and

· information sharing.

Deputy Commissioner Bev Busson of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police delivered the opening address to the workshop.

Major highlights of the workshop included:

· special presentations on underground banking and alternative remittance systems by representatives of the RCMP, the US Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FINCEN) and The World Bank;

· special presentations on information sharing by representatives of Interpol, The Egmont Group of Financial Intelligence Units and the Anti-Money Laundering Office of Thailand;

· breakout sessions to discuss in depth issues relating to alternative remittance systems and information sharing as they relate to money laundering and terrorist financing;

· special presentations on tracing the proceeds of terrorist financing and money laundering by representatives of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) Secretariat, the RCMP, and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation;

· development of a clearer picture of current money laundering methods and trends in the region; and

· agreement that further intensive work continue so as to improve information sharing between countries.

"In an ever smaller world it is easier to transfer criminal money between countries. Therefore, greater practical cooperation is the only way for countries to protect themselves from money laundering and terrorist financing. This Workshop is one concrete step in that direction", said Rick McDonell, Head of the APG Secretariat.

The Workshop concluded with agreement on the need for a continuing and increased understanding of money laundering and terrorist financing methods in the region and renewed commitment to effectively counteracting these methods.

The participants in the Workshop extended their gratitude to Canada, and in particular to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, for the arrangements they made in hosting the Workshop.

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Background on the APG can be found on the APG web site at: www.apgml.org

For media inquiries: Rick McDonell (02) 9373 2438 (0418) 942 412

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