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Report on money-laundering systems welcomed

Hon Simon Power
Minister of Justice


23 November 2009 Media Statement

Report on money-laundering systems welcomed

Justice Minister Simon Power today welcomed the Financial Action Taskforce's 2009 Mutual Evaluation Report on New Zealand's anti-money laundering and countering financing of terrorism.

"The taskforce, alongside the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering, has conducted an in-depth assessment of New Zealand's legal framework, financial preventative measures, and law enforcement capability to detect and deter money laundering and the financing of terrorism.

"The Government accepts the taskforce's recommendations, and has already addressed the substantive issues the report raises through the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering of Financing of Terrorism Act (AMLCFT), which was passed last month.

"This Act recognises that effective control of money laundering and crime that leads to it needs collaboration between the financial sector and government. It's an essential component in New Zealand's ability to investigate organised crime, and to follow the money trail through financial system.

"It also goes hand-in-hand with the Criminal Proceeds (Recovery) Act, which was passed in April and can be used to attack criminal profits.

"The AMLCFT Act enables New Zealand to better contribute to the international fight against money laundering and terrorism financing. It will also ensure New Zealand's financial sector continues to be attractive to legitimate international investors, and is not seen as a safe haven for organised criminals.

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"It's heartening to see that the taskforce recognises New Zealand’s low financing of terrorism risk and that our law enforcement and intelligence agencies are vigilant and effective in their investigation of terrorism financing," Mr Power said.

The 2009 FATF Mutual Evaluation Report can be found on the FATF website: www.fatf-gafi.org

ENDS

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