Passing FATF bills not to improve economic challenges: MP

TEHRAN, Feb. 16 (MNA) – A member of the Iranian Parliament says the implementation of the remaining bills mandated by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) will only add to the complexity of the economic challenges in the face of the US sanctions.

In a talk with Mehr News Agency on Tuesday, Javad Nikbin, a member of the Iranian Parliament, referred to President Hassan Rouhani’s previous remarks regarding the economic challenges and said only a fifth of the problems emanate directly from the sanctions and the rest should be looked for in domestic affairs.

He said the FATF is trying to find out the unclear financial channels that Iran is using to circumvent the cruel sanctions and noted, “The implementation of the FATF bills would not solve any problem; in fact, it would add to the complexity of the current challenges.”

“Joining the Financial Action Task Force will definitely increase the [negative] impacts of the sanctions on our economy,” Nikbin said and stressed, “Therefore, we ask the Expediency Council reject the bills on FAFT.”

The Guardian Council is a watchdog that ensures laws are in line with the Islamic Republic Constitution and Sharia; the Expediency Council is Iran’s top legislation vetting body.

Earlier in December, the Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei approved a government request to extend the deadline for discussions on the two remaining bills mandated by the global anti-money laundering body.

In February 2020, the global anti-money laundering watchdog lifted the suspension of counter-measures on Iran and called on its members and all jurisdictions to apply effective counter-measures against the country.

The Iranian government has been striving in recent weeks to have the remaining bills endorsed by Iran’s Expediency Council, with the optimism that the US economic siege may end when US president-elect Joe Biden takes office.

Senior government officials have often stressed that removing Iran from the FATF blacklist will ease the process to counter US economic terrorism.

MR/5148204

News Code 170021

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