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Iran doubling down on its race to escape FATF’s blacklisting

On the 8th of October, Iran’s Parliament completed its task of approving the fourth and final bill called for by the FATF action plan. Given the stakes at hand, namely the possibility that current JCPOA signatories would sanction Iran should it be blacklisted again by FATF, this approval is an achievement for Rouhani as it is likely to lead FATF’s incoming plenary meeting into extending the suspension of countermeasures on Iran. This would buy Iran some time to end the legislative back-and-forth between the Parliament and the Guardian Council, which still has to ratify three of the four bills approved by Parliament.

The bills have drawn vehement opposition from conservatives and their content has been softened to get another chance at being ratified by the Guardian Council. The compliance of Iran’s financial system with international rules is of utmost importance for the president and his policy to safeguard Iran’s ties with global trade players. If ratified, Iran would have updated its Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing laws as well acceded to the UN’s International Convention for the Suppression of Financing of Terrorism and the UN’s Convention against Transnational Organised Crime.

 

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