The likelihood of Malta failing this year’s Moneyval exam on money laundering and financial crime is becoming increasingly likelier according to reports based on comments by American officials based in Malta. Such failure, following the reprimand issued last year, would mean that Malta ends up as the first EU Member State on the so-called grey-list, that is a nation which poses a high risk of financial crime.
Speaking during Newsbook Hour, the Malta Chamber President David Xuereb said that the risk of Malta’s grey listing is unfortunately very real.
President Xuereb expressed his concern about the possible negative outcomes and everyone needs to act in this direction. To achieve this everyone needs to realise the risk and act accordingly. He said that the country needs to send the right signals that it is acting on all levels to ensure the timely investigations in every possible case, irrispective of the role and function in the economic ecosystem.
President Xuereb said that the country needs the peace of mind that we have a jurisidiction which is credible.
While much effort is being carried out by Government, regulators, authorities and private enterprise, no stone should be left unturned to address all concerns and enable us to reassure sustainable and resilient business.
While the country is putting all its energy in efforts to try to go through the Covid-19 crisis with the least damage possible, the threat on our economy, due to the negative impact of grey listing on our economy will be very serious. Foreign investors will look at us negatively, banks will be concerned and correspondent banking will be much harder. We need to act, and do it quick not just to abide by what is being recommended by Moneyval, but also for the economic wellbeing our country. “Malta can’t afford the setbacks of grey listing, at any point, let alone after the Covid-19 outbreak saga”.