GIABA holds 26th plenary meeting

Friday, November 11, 2016

The Intergovernmental Action Group against Money Laundering in West Africa (GIABA), will hold the 26th Plenary Meeting of its Technical Commission in Saly, Republic of Senegal, from 14 to 18 November, 2016.

The key objective of this meeting is to discuss, among experts from Member States (MS), the threats and challenges associated with Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing (ML/TF) in the region.

The biannual GIABA Plenary meeting also provides an opportunity for member States to share experiences on the effective implementation of measures designed to fight against ML/FT.

The Plenary is a statutory meeting where the reviews of countries’ performance are considered through their follow-up reports.

Finally, it provides an opportunity for experts, representatives of member States, technical partners and observers to meet and exchange fresh ideas on anti-money laundering and counter financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) measures.

During this meeting, the Evaluation and Compliance Group (ECG) of GIABA will discuss the Follow-Up Reports on the implementation of the recommendations emanating from the Mutual Evaluation Reports (MER) of some member States (MS).

The follow-up is a process, which is aimed at helping member States to resolve the deficiencies identified in their AML/CFT regimes in order to ensure compliance with acceptable international standards. It creates a huge positive impact and steps up the level of compliance of member States in relation to the recommendations of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).

The follow-up process is introduced after the discussion and adoption of the Mutual Evaluation Report. They are then encouraged to address those deficiencies and are subsequently subjected to the follow-up monitoring processes, with the obligation to present a report to Plenary on a regular basis until the requirements are satisfactorily met.

Even though GIABA member States have been showing incremental improvement through this process, most of them still have deficiencies in some key aspects of their AML/CFT regimes as identified in their MERs. The countries whose FURs will be discussed during this plenary are Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Togo, Niger and The Islamic Republic of The Gambia.  

Also during the plenary meeting, the GIABA Risks, Trends and Methods Group (RTMG) will provide, among other things, updates on the concluded typology exercise on Terrorism Financing in West and Central Africa.

It will also consider the updates on the ongoing GIABA Typologies on Money Laundering Emanating from Counterfeit Pharmaceutical Products in West Africa; the proposed for a new Typology Exercise on ML/TF and the Extractive/Mining Industry in GIABA Member States; and emerging Terrorist Financing risks. 

Other major activities such as the Regional Forum of Financial Intelligence Units (FFIU); and the presentation of the Director General’s Activity Report, will be some of the salient items on the Agenda of this meeting which Senegal normally hosts at every November.

The opening ceremony of this meeting will be gracefully attended by the Prime Minister and Minister of Justice of the Republic of Senegal.