Preliminary Results of the Asia/Pacific Group on Money Laundering Third Round Mutual Evaluation Affirms Chinese Taipei's Performance
The two-week onsite mutual evaluation conducted by Asia/Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG) in Chinese Taipei was successfully concluded today (November 16). The assessment team announced the preliminary results today. Although the evaluation report is not yet published, the preliminary results provided by the assessment team this morning confirmed Chinese Taipei’s improvements, which were made possible by the support of senior levels of the government and the cooperation between the public and private sectors over the past two years.
The leader of the delegation David Shannon said in his speech that the members were in discussion until 3 a.m. this morning and found Chinese Taipei’s performance to be impressive. The delegation confirmed that the country’s inter-agency coordination mechanisms have performed well based on high-level support from the government. The newly-established Anti-Money Laundering Office of the Executive Yuan displayed outstanding coordination capabilities; competent authorities and private sectors also fully participated in the operations and efforts.
Mr. Shannon stated that the delegation also approved of Chinese Taipei’s capacity for providing immediate mutual legal assistance as well as a functioning Financial Intelligence Unit and counter-terrorist financing measures. Capabilities included diversity in requesting and providing international cooperation, establishment of MOUs with multiple strategic partners, and assigning legal secretaries or police liaison officers to multiple foreign offices for exchange of intelligence. Chinese Taipei displayed a considerable level of effectiveness. The Financial Intelligence Unit has fully used its advantages to achieve a comprehensive counter terrorist financing system. The Executive Yuan also provided sufficient resources to AML efforts from non-financial industries, which include attorneys, accountants, jewelry retailers, land administration agents, real estate brokers, bookkeepers, bookkeepers/tax return filing agents, and notaries. They have made improvements in their AML/CFT operations.
However, the assessment team also pointed out deficiencies, including the domestic financial institutions’ excessive reliance on money laundering patterns published by the authorities and the need to enhance risk-based management. Financial supervision must enhance the risk management mechanisms of customer due diligence of OBUs and enhance OBU’s review of beneficial owners. In addition, the punishment for ML offences tend to be light and offer little deterrence, while legislation for preventing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction still has room for improvement.
The assessment team provided specific recommendations and stated that Chinese Taipei shall continue to complete and enforce the nationwide AML/CFT strategy and institutionalize the coordination mechanisms established for the APG’s third-round mutual evaluation. The institutions shall continue to support ongoing risk mitigation measures and ensure the implementation of AML/CFT policies. Chinese Taipei should also strengthen specific international cooperation measures for high-risk threats and offences.
Vice Premier Jun-ji Shih stated in the closing ceremony that more than one thousand evaluations have been conducted on representatives of the public and private sectors, which shows Chinese Taipei’s impressive dedication and hard work in countering the financing of terrorism and in law enforcement. Premier Ching-Te Lai also listened to reports made by the units to improve the performance of the executive branch and to transition to international standards. All units shall carefully assess the preliminary evaluation report of the assessment team and continue to improve related measures. Good results must be continued, and negative results require immediate improvement. The public and private sectors must also work together to educate the people on related regulations, reduce complaints from the people, and allow the new system to progress smoothly for Chinese Taipei's future betterment.
Minister without Portfolio Ping-Cheng Lo expressed his gratitude to the 9 foreign evaluators who came to Chinese Taipei and provided the most advanced AML guidance in 90 interviews in more than 10 days of evaluations. He also thanked all public and private-sector participants for their hard work in preparation for this round of mutual evaluations, which has created cohesion in teamwork.
After the Executive Yuan established the Anti-Money Laundering Office on March 16, 2017, it has actively prepared for the third-round mutual evaluations. 37 institutions and 31 industries worked hard and cooperated to complete the National Risk Assessment Report, Technical Compliance Report, and Effectiveness Compliance Report.
The assessment team affirmed Chinese Taipei’s hard work and real progress. Beginning immediately, the public and private sectors shall make continuous improvements on the specific recommendations of the evaluation. When the Evaluation Report is published in late January 2019, related regulations or measures for which Chinese Taipei has failed to make improvements may be included in the face-to-face review meetings from March 18 to 21, 2019, when the assessment team visits Chinese Taipei again, after which time we can make improvements and achieve better results. The final report shall be concluded in the APG's annual meeting in July 2019.
The Executive Yuan shall urge the public and private sectors to immediately accelerate improvements for deficiencies listed by the assessment team today. The preliminary results of the evaluation published today are testament to the hard work of all sectors in Chinese Taipei for winning an international reputation for financial transparency and connecting to international standards.
Vice Premier Jun-ji Shih delivered a speech.
Head of the assessment team David Shannon delivered a speech.
Head of the assessment team David Shannon delivered a speech.
Group photo of the assessment team and Vice Premier Jun-ji Shih.