On Tuesday morning, 24 May 2022, the inauguration of the Middle East and North Africa Financial Action Task Force (“MENAFATF”) plenary meeting has started and will continue over two days. The Plenary will take place in Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain, chaired by His Excellency Dr. Jawhar Al-Nafisi, MENAFATF President and Chairman of the Moroccan Financial Intelligence Unit (“FIU”), His Excellency Dr. Mohamed El Amine El Dahabi, MENAFATF Vice President, Governor of the Central Bank of Mauritania, member countries, in addition to experts from observer countries and international bodies concerned with AML/CFT/CPF, led by the Financial Action Task Force (“FATF”), the United Nations (“UN”), the International Monetary Fund (“IMF”) and Egmont Group.
Within the framework of this gathering of experts, these meetings come as a real opportunity to strengthen and unify regional and international efforts led by the MENAFATF concerning anti-money laundering, combating terrorist financing and proliferation financing and to protect the economic, social and political systems in the region from the risks of such crimes. A number of enhanced follow-up reports (“EFURs”) for a number of member countries and the efforts and actions taken by each country to address the shortcomings contained in their Mutual Evaluation Reports will be discussed and adopted accordingly.
The plenary meeting will also discuss areas of technical assistance and training of workshops and training programs on topics related to the MENAFATF's fields of work, in addition to the training programs and plans as well as webinars for 2022, plus other future projects. The plenary will also tackle some topics such as the existing joint works for some topics related to ML/TF of a regional nature, such as the typologies project that is currently being implemented regarding the abuse of NPOs in TF activities, exchanging experiences in this regard, developing solutions to deal therewith, as well as spreading awareness of the ML/TF risks.
It is worth noting that the current plenary meeting was precedented by a number of MENAFATF’s working groups meetings virtually during the period from 15 to 19 May 2022, which included the meeting of the MEWG, the meeting of the TATWG, the FIUs Forum, and the Risk Committee. The plenary meeting will listen to these working groups’ reports to take the necessary actions and decisions with relation thereof.