Parliament approves a law to combat terrorist financing and money laundering

Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana.

South Africa’s parliament passed anti-money laundering and anti-terrorist financing legislation needed to prevent the country from being placed on a global illicit finance watch list.

Passing the Legislative Amendment Act amends five laws to address technical compliance deficiencies identified in an assessment by the Financial Action Task Force, the National Treasury said in a statement Tuesday. It addresses deficiencies in at least 14 of the FATF’s 20 Recommendations, including strengthening powers and processes for regulators.

“If enacted, it will enhance South Africa’s adherence to international best practices in fighting financial crime and corruption,” Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana said in the statement.

Africa’s most industrialized economy was found to be deficient in all 11 efficiency measures by the Paris-based FATF to combat money laundering and terrorist financing. The assessment was conducted in 2019 after an era of endemic transplants during former President Jacob Zuma’s nine-year rule. Zuma, who resigned in 2018 under pressure from the ruling party, has repeatedly denied wrongdoing.

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