Germany has a worse record on money-laundering than Cyprus, according to assessments by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), the global body charged with tackling money-laundering.
The FATF and MoneyVal have published evaluation reports for all 17 countries in the eurozone.
A comparative table that was published on the Cyprus Ministry of Finance website this week shows that Germany is completely non-compliant in five of the FATF-recommended areas, whereas there are no areas in which Cyprus is completely non-compliant.
Cyprus is totally compliant in 12 areas, whereas Germany is totally compliant in only 5.
Cyprus also has the toughest regime in the EU for identification of beneficial ownership, with the obligation to identify ownership kicking in at 10%, instead of the obligation 25% threshold provided for in the 3rd EU anti-money-laundering directive .
On the basis of the number of areas in full compliance, Cyprus ranks 7th out of 17, whereas Germany ranks close to the bottom, at 14th, ahead of Greece, Slovakia and financial centre Luxembourg.
The FATF report on Germany says “substantial proceeds of crime are generated in Germany, estimated to be EUR 40 to EUR 60 billion (approximately USD 60–80 billion), inclusive of tax evasion, annually.”
In the past few weeks German media and lawmakers have accused Cyprus of being a centre for money-laundering and threatened to veto a bailout for Cyprus, whose banks were severely hit when eurozone leaders agreed to a massive write-down of Greek sovereign debt.
The head of the Cyprus anti-money-laundering unit, MOKAS, Eva Papakyriacou, presented these and other findings to EU ambassadors earlier this week.
“The reason we introduced the specific table was not to blame anyone and make negative reference to countries, but to defend ourselves and to show how unfair the accusations against Cyprus for money laundering are”, she told the Cyprus News Agency. For table, click here.
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