Cambodia has pledged its commitment to combat money laundering, terrorist funding, and genocide financing, according to Deputy Prime Minister Sar Kheng.
On January 11, at a meeting with the Pacific Delegation of International Cooperation (ICRG-JG), Sar Kheng, who is also the Minister of Interior, reaffirmed Cambodia's commitment to combat money laundering, terrorist funding, and weapons financing.
He said on his Facebook page that from 2019 until today, Cambodia has made significant progress in the framework of developing regulations to serve these objectives, as well as the implementation of various tasks mandated by international financial institutions.
He said that in addition to developing legislative papers to support these activities, Cambodia has actively examined, amended, and improved the strategy to lead this effort, including the formation of sub-committees with suitable capabilities in the areas of responsibility.
He said that this effort is a priority for Cambodia. Moreover, Cambodia has initiated a series of anti-money laundering activities aimed at raising awareness.
Pech Pisey, Executive Director at Transparency International Cambodia, said that if Cambodia has a strong commitment to remove itself from the gray list, civil society and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) will be grateful. He is currently noting the government's commitment, he added.
“However, it’s important to effectively implement FATA's tasks. Especially, it entails efficiently enforcing the regulation, eliminating corruption, and arresting the suspect,” he said. “Previously, we saw a good strategy, but its implementation was constrained. So, they [FATA] evaluate the implementation guidelines as well.”
He added that Cambodia and other nations must work together to successfully execute the regulation.
“Especially, it involves the transmission of confidential information about money laundering or people involved in it,” he said.
Since 2019, Cambodia has been on FATF's "gray list" for failing to prevent illegal money laundering.
After the FATF placed Cambodia on the gray list earlier in 2019 and the EU identified it as a financial-risk state in 2020, the nation implemented the Law on the Prevention of Money Laundering and Combating Terrorist Financing.