Iran tops world league for money laundering and terror finance

Updated 14 September 2017

Iran tops world league for money laundering and terror finance

RIYADH: Iran has topped the world league table for money laundering and terror financing for the third consecutive year.
It was followed by Afghanistan, Guinea-Bissau, Tajikistan and Laos in the annual rankings compiled by the Basel Institute on Governance, an independent anti-corruption group based in Switzerland. The three lowest ranked countries were Finland, Lithuania and Estonia.
In the list of 146 countries, Saudi Arabia ranked 93rd, which gives the Kingdom’s banking system a superior rating to that of Turkey in 43rd, Pakistan in 46th, China in 51st, Russia in 64th and India in 88th, and only marginally behind Japan in 98th.
“The Kingdom has a clean record as far as money laundering is concerned,” said Syed Ahmed Ziauddin, chief of the financial institutions and public sector at Bank Aljazira. “All financial institutions, including banks, have a high compliance rating within the framework of international regulations and guidelines issued by the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority. The banks in the Kingdom have world-class technical platforms on a par with advanced countries.”
Marwan Jafri, another local banker, said: “Saudi banks are fully committed to fighting money laundering and combating terrorism financing by adopting and maintaining appropriate policies, systems and controls. But there are ample proofs in the public domain about the involvement of Iran in money laundering and terror financing.”
This is the sixth year in which the institute has compiled its rankings. Its report says the greatest improvements in the past year have been made by Sudan, Taiwan, and Bangladesh. In South Asia, Afghanistan is the highest-risk country followed by Nepal, Sri Lanka and Pakistan.
 


Stena Impero owner met Iran’s Zarif to urge release of UK-flagged ship

Updated 1 min 18 sec ago

Stena Impero owner met Iran’s Zarif to urge release of UK-flagged ship

LONDON: The owner of a British-flagged tanker detained in Iran has met the country’s foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, to make the case for the ship and its crew to be released.
Erik Hanell, chief executive of Stena Bulk, met Zarif in Stockholm on Aug. 20 to ask for the Stena Impero to be released. It was detained by Tehran on July 19, two weeks after Britain detained an Iranian tanker off the territory of Gibraltar. That ship was released this week.
“A constructive dialogue was had and we shared information around the case,” Hanell said in a statement on Wednesday. “It was important for us to emphasize the importance of the release of the 23 crew ... Also for the release of the Swedish owned vessel Stena Impero.