Ghana is challenging its addition to a list of 23 countries with weak framework for tackling anti-money laundering and the Financing of Terrorism.
It’s finance ministry in a statement copied to Africafeeds.com described the methodology used by the European Commission as flawed.
It says there were no communications with Ghana concerning shortcomings that needed to be improved.
“Ghana’s commitment to enforcing the anti-money laundering and the countering of financing terrorism framework has been acknowledged by the global standard regulatory body, the Financial Action Task Force”, the statement noted.
It says “Ghana regrets the February 13, 2019 decision by the European Commission [EC] to add Ghana to its list of countries with strategic deficiencies in their anti-money laundering and countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) framework.”
Five African countries cited
The European Commission cited six African countries including Ghana on the said list.
It said these countries were encouraging money laundering and terrorism financing.
The other five African countries are Botswana, Libya, Tunisia, Ethiopia and Libya.
The blacklisting according to the EC was to protect the EU financial system. It will also prevent money laundering and terrorist financing risks.
But Ghana said in a statement that “the European Commission’s blacklist of Ghana does not reflect the current of Ghana’s anti-money laundering regime describing the move as unfortunate.”
Ghana maintains it was not given the opportunity to respond or implement corrective measures, which is the norm.
Mandate of European Commission
The Commission is mandated to carry out an autonomous assessment and identify the high-risk third countries.
The current blacklist was established on the basis of an analysis of 54 priority jurisdiction. It was prepared by the Commission in consultation with the member states.
The countries were assessed based on systemic impact on the integrity of the EU financial system.
They were also assessed after going through a review by the International Monetary Fund as international offshore financial centers and economic relevance and strong economic ties with the EU.