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High-Risk Jurisdictions: CBN Warns Banks over Russia, Iran, Cameroon Transactions

High-Risk Jurisdictions: CBN Warns Banks over Russia, Iran, Cameroon Transactions

As a way to protect financial system against problems associated with high-risk jurisdictions, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has warned Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) and Other Financial Institutions (OFIs) in the country to be wary of transactions with businesses and persons in the Russian Federation, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Iran and Cameroun.

The warning was contained in a circular referenced: FPR/AML/PUB/BOF/001/029, which was issued yesterday by the Director, Financial Policy and Regulation, Mr. Chibuzo Efobi.

According to circular Nigerian banks and other financial institutions needed to watch transactions with those countries because they had been placed under the high-risk jurisdictions list by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).

The FATF is the global money laundering and terrorist financing watchdog. It sets international standards that aim to prevent these illegal activities and the harm they cause to society.

High-risk jurisdictions have significant strategic deficiencies in their regimes to counter money laundering, terrorist financing, and financing of proliferation. For all countries identified as high-risk, the FATF calls on all members and urges all jurisdictions to apply enhanced due diligence, and in the most serious cases, countries are called upon to apply counter-measures to protect the international financial system from the ongoing money laundering, terrorist financing, and proliferation financing (ML/TF/PF) risks emanating from the country.

Other countries on the list include: Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Croatia, Vietnam and Myanmar.

The CBN said that its action flowed from the decisions taken by members of the FATF  at a plenary  which was held last month.

The Circular reads in part, “The attention of banks and other Financial Institutions is drawn to the outcomes of Financial Action Task Force Plenary conducted from June 21-23, 3023 and subsequent addition of Cameroon, Croatia and Vietnam to the list of jurisdictions under ‘Increased Monitoring.’
“Furthermore, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Iran and Myanmar remain on the list of high-risk jurisdictions, subject to ‘Call for Action.’

“Consequently, enhanced due diligence should be applied and in severe cases, counter-measures may need to be implemented to safeguard the international financial system.

“Additionally, we would like to emphasise that the suspension of the Russian Federation from the FATF remains in effect.

“FIs are to be vigilant to and be alert to possible emerging risks resulting from the circumvention of measures taken to protect the international financial system.

“In light of these developments, FIs are directed to note all additions to jurisdictions under ‘Increased Monitoring,’ as well as, high-risk jurisdictions subject to a ‘Call-for-Action’ and take necessary measures to mitigate these risks effectively.”

About Bukola Olanrewaju

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