Head of AML/CFT at the Central Bank of Bahrain, Ms. Maryam Salman, participated with the Mutual Evaluation Team of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) to assess the anti-money Laundering and counter-terrorist financing system in New Zealand. The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) is the inter-governmental body that sets international standards that aim to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing and the harm they cause to society.
The assessors’ selection process is subject to certain standards as defined by the FATF to ensure the level of performance and the quality of the outputs of the evaluation processes, as it is the responsibility of the assessor to have a comprehensive knowledge of the FATF recommendations and universal standards to measure the extent of countries’ commitment to implementing internationally approved requirements and their level of effectiveness.
Based on Ms. Salman’s profound experience, she was selected within the evaluation team, which includes experts in legal, financial, and law enforcement affairs, where the task was assigned to assess preventive measures to combat money laundering and terrorist financing in the financial sector, designated non-financial businesses and professions, and virtual asset service providers sectors, in addition to the task of assessing the measures related to transparency and the beneficial ownership of legal persons and legal arrangements.
The evaluation process takes a period of 1.5 years, starting with the preparation phase, then the field visit to the assessed country which lasts 3 weeks, followed by writing and reviewing the report, and then discussing and approving it at the FATF Plenary meeting. Ms. Salman was selected to deliver the assessment team’s speech at the FATF Plenary meeting which was held virtually on 22 February 2021, and was attended by representatives of the group’s 33 member states, in addition to representatives of organizations and international finance bodies such as the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.
The selection and participation of experts from the Kingdom of Bahrain in the mutual evaluation processes of the FATF related to prohibiting and combating money laundering and terrorist financing reflects the distinguished experience and competence of Bahraini women in this field.