Panama: getting off the 'grey list'
Panama expects soon to reduce the costs of transactions by financial institutions with their counterparts in other countries, by complying with rules imposed by the Financial Action Task Force.
Being on a list of approved countries will in addition help Panama get favorable treatment from global lenders, including the International Monetary Fund, which in the past has flagged problems with the Panamanian financial system.
To help control money laundering, as well as transactions involving funds used by terrorist organizations and illicit armament traders, Panama is currently drafting 15 regulations, which cover obligations and sanctions for banks, insurers, stock and commodity brokers, and remittance companies, among other institutions.
Along with ten other countries, which are in the process of complying, Panama is currently on the so-called "grey list" of the task force.
Established in 1989, the Financial Action Task Force has developed a series of recommendations to combat illicit transborder financial transactions.
A Paris-based inter-governmental body, the task force has 34 member countries, including Mexico and Brazil In Latin America.