FATF Statement
Published Date: 16 November 2017

November 2017 FATF Statement

On 3 November 2017, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), of which Singapore is a member, issued an updated Public Statement that highlighted the strategic deficiencies in the anti-money laundering/combating the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) regimes of the following jurisdictions:

  • The FATF remains concerned by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK)’s failure to address the significant deficiencies in its AML/CFT regime and the serious threats they pose to the integrity of the international financial system. The FATF urges the DPRK to immediate and meaningfully address its AML/CFT deficiencies. The FATF has serious concerns with the threat posed by DPRK’s illicit activities related to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and its financing. DPRK is subject to the FATF’s call on countries to apply counter-measures and FIs should give special attention to business relationships and transactions with links, whether directly or indirectly, to the DPRK. Countries and financial institutions are called to apply effective counter‑measures, targeted financial sanctions, and other measures in accordance with the applicable United Nations Security Council Resolutions (UNSCRs). 
  • In June 2016, Iran adopted and committed to an Action Plan to address its strategic AML/CFT deficiencies. In response, the FATF suspended counter-measures for 12 months to monitor Iran’s progress. In light of Iran’s demonstration of its political commitment and the relevant steps it has taken in line with its action plan, the FATF decided to continue the suspension of counter-measures and monitor Iran’s progress. However, the FATF remains concerned with the terrorist financing risk emanating from Iran and the threat this poses to the international financial system. Enhanced due diligence, proportionate to the risks, should continue to be applied on business relationships and transactions with natural and legal persons from Iran.

The FATF issued a separate statement on DPRK, to underline deep concerns with the proliferation financing risk emanating from the DPRK. The statement highlights the importance of robust and effective implementation of the FATF standards and UNSC Resolutions to disrupt the DPRK’s illicit financial activities. It also notes that the “DPRK frequently uses front companies, shell companies, joint ventures and complex, opaque ownership structures for the purpose of violating sanctions”, and FIs should pay attention to these risks when dealing with entities that could be linked to the DPRK.

Details of the FATF Statement can be found at:


Details of the separate FATF Statement on DPRK can be found at:


The FATF has also issued an updated statement on its on-going process to improve global AML/CFT compliance.  This statement provides information on a list of jurisdictions that have committed to action plans to address and strengthen their respective AML/CFT deficiencies, and would assist financial institutions and relevant non-financial institutions in your risk assessment and mitigation.  The FATF Compliance statement can be found at:


Financial institutions are advised to accord due consideration to the above FATF statements and take the appropriate action(s) and level of due-diligence measures, as required in the respective MAS AML/CFT Notices and guidance.  Further, financial institutions are to note their obligations under the Monetary Authority of Singapore (Sanctions and Freezing of Assets of Persons – Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) Regulations 2016, which has been updated to take into account the latest UNSCRs. Non-financial institutions that are subjected to AML/CFT requirements in Singapore are similarly advised to note the updated and new statements and take appropriate measures in accordance with your respective AML/CFT obligations.