Meetings on anti-laundering bill impasse could start today

Meetings between government and the opposition parties to reach an agreement on the AML/CFT (Amendments) Bill before the next sitting of the National Assembly could commence as early as today.

President Donald Ramotar yesterday met Leader of A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) David Granger, and in addition to discussing the nominees to the Public Sector Commission (PSC) and the Teaching Service Commission they also considered the issue of the unpassed Anti-Money Laundering Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) (Amendment) Bill.

Owing to Guyana’s inability to get the bill passed the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF), a regional arm of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), advised its 34 members to take countermeasures aimed at insulating themselves, and by extension the rest of the international system, from money laundering and terrorism financing that may be emanating from the country. During a late night interview, Granger told this newspaper that he and the president reiterated their commitment to working towards an amicable solution where the bill is concerned.

He said the position of each side was noted, respected, and will be considered as they seek to host a series of talks aimed at setting the stage for the bill to be passed when the National Assembly sits next in two weeks.

Granger said while no timetable has been determined, these meetings, which will involve the Alliance for Change (AFC), can commence very soon, “as early as tomorrow [today].”

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