In a bid to improve national cooperation in the investigation and prosecution of money laundering, terrorist financing and other financial crime, the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) has established Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) with several government agencies. These agreements are geared to boost the FIU’s information-gathering capabilities.
The signing was done at the Ministry of Legal Affairs yesterday afternoon, in the presence of Attorney General (AG) and Minister of Legal Affairs, Basil Williams, SC., and overseen by FIU’s Director, Matthew Langevine.
According to the AG, the sharing of information is most critical now as the country continues the fight against money laundering and combatting the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.
“We have decided to do something that is done throughout CFATF [Caribbean Financial Action Task Force] and FATF [Financial Action Task Force], that we will exercise now. The parties to the MOUs now will be able to properly exchange information with one another, depending on the situation,” he told the media.
Agencies represented at the signing included the Bank of Guyana (BoG), the Guyana Gold Board (GGB), the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC), the Guyana Securities Council, the Chief Cooperative Development Officer, the Registrar of Friendly Societies, and the Land Registry.
The AG said the government will continue to work with the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and Guyana’s hemispheric body the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) in the struggle to combat money laundering and terrorist financing.
“We will be continuing, in the interest of the people of Guyana and the people of the Caribbean, to do all that we can to assist this process,” the Attorney General stated.
In April this year, FIU head Matthew Langevine had reported successes from a collaboration of more than 330 reporting agencies, which he said were providing information to the unit.
“We have been getting relatively good support. I think the entities recognise the importance of this and with the kind of engagements we have been having nationally to ensure that the agencies understand their obligation, they appreciate why they need to be reporting the information to us,” he had told the Department of Public Information (DPI).
Through an MOU signed with the State Asset Recovery Agency (SARA), the body has also been able to provide the entity with financial information to assist investigations. Langevine had said that FIU’s services are utilised across the intelligence sector. (Modified from the Department of Public Information)