Canada needs to improve its anti-money laundering efforts according to U.S.

By Christine Duhaime | May 22nd, 2010

Canada needs to improve its anti-money laundering efforts in several areas, according to the 2010 Money Laundering Report published by the U.S. Department of State. Canada was among 61 countries identified as major money laundering countries in 2009. Others include Afghanistan, Austria, Brazil, Cayman Islands, China, Greece, India, Iran, Italy, Lebanon, Lichtenstein, Mexico, Pakistan, Turkey, Switzerland, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States and Zimbabwe.

The Report identified six areas in which Canada should focus to improve its anti-money laundering compliance. The most significant area of concern is organized crime. The Canadian Security Intelligence Service estimates that there are about 750 organized crime groups operating in Canada and 80% of them are involved in the illicit drug trade.

Other areas of concern include:

  1. improved oversight and regulation of anti-money laundering measures in the gambling industry;
  2. better communication between FINTRAC and law enforcement authorities;
  3. better monitoring of money services businesses;
  4. improved cross border reporting with U.S. authorities; and
  5. ensuring privacy laws do not stand in the way of providing information to foreign and domestic law enforcement agencies.

The 2010 Money Laundering Report also cites currency transactions to Somalia from Canada, the U.S. and Europe that are routed through Nairobi as an area of concern for money laundering and terrorist financing.

The 2010 Money Laundering Report is available here.

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