The country is moving swiftly to ensure that it does not get greylisted.
This it will do through hosting an anti-money laundering Indaba aimed at capacitating local stakeholders.
The Indaba will take place on the 19th and 20th of July 2023.
In an interview with the Eswatini Broadcasting & Information Services (EBIS), CBE’s Nomfanelo Kunene noted that to ensure that the country does not greylisted, local stakeholders should be capacitated..
The CBE further notes that the Indaba is also motivated by the fact that South Africa, the country’s biggest trading partner was greylisted by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) for not fully complying with international standards around the prevention of money laundering, terrorist financing and proliferation financing.
According to the FATF, greylisting means that a country is under increased monitoring due to certain deficiencies in its anti-money laundering (AML) and combatting the financing of terrorism and proliferation financing framework.
“We have taken the decision to be proactive and educate emaSwati on anti-money laundering in a bid to ensure that we are not greylisted,” she noted.
She further elaborated on what could lead to the country being possibly greylisted.
“In 2022, ‘the Mutual Evaluation Report on Eswatini spearheaded by the observed that the country applies anti-money laundering standards but not to their entirety. As a result of that outcome we have taken the decision to hold the Indaba which will aid in capacitating various stakeholders in the country.”
She disclosed that during the Indaba they will be looking at the laws and measures put in place by the global financial crime watchdog, the FATF.
Kunene said contravening those laws is what could lead the country to being greylisted, and the only way to avoid that is to capacitate the country and the relevant stakeholders on those laws and measures.
What does being greylisted mean for a country?
- Reduction in foreign direct investment
- Reduced competitiveness in global markets
- Challenges for local businesses wishing to access international financial services
- Increased due diligence by foreign parties for investors
- Reduced confidence
Worth noting is that the Ministry of Finance’s second quarter performance for the 2022/23 period noted that over E990 million is potentially laundered in the country.