© Behnam Mohammadi/Kayhan London

November 10, 2017 The Financial Task Force (FATF) is an inter-governmental policy-making body that combats money laundering, terrorism financing and other related threats to the “integrity of the international financial system.” It was established in 1989 by the ministers of its member states.

The FATF has developed a series of recommendations for implementing so-called Anti-Money Laundering/Combating the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) measures. It divides countries into three types: Standard, On-Going Process, and High Risk and Non-Cooperative. Iran has been on the list of High Risk and Non-Cooperative countries since 2010.

In a public statement released on November 3, the FATF called on its members to “advise their financial institutions to apply enhanced due diligence to business relationships and transactions with natural and legal persons from Iran.”

The statement warned Iran that it had until January 31 to fully implement the articles of the Action Plan and address “all remaining AML/CFT deficiencies, in particular those related to terrorist financing.”

In a June 23 public statement, the FATF praised Iran for its commitment to addressing its AML/CFT deficiencies. It also welcomed Tehran’s “decision to seek technical assistance in the implementation of the Action Plan.” The statement concluded that Iran had taken positive steps, and that therefore, FATF had decided “to continue the suspension of counter-measures.” 

The FATF has, however, said that Iran will remain on its public statement until “the full Action Plan has been completed.” This means Iran will have to address every single “deficiency” and concern outlined in the Action Plan. The FATF continues to monitor Iran for any violation of the AML/CFT which may pose a threat to the international financial system.