Relationship to the FATF
As noted in the History and Background section of this website, the APG evolved from initial awareness-raising efforts by the FATF.
The APG's Terms of Reference recognise that the FATF's 40 Recommendations constitute the international standards for anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism. The APG Terms of Reference include a commitment that APG members must implement the FATF 40 Recommendations according to their particular constitutional frameworks. Those Terms of Reference also state that "To ensure a global approach to combating money laundering and the financing of terrorism and proliferation, and as an Associate Member of the FATF, members of the APG will work closely with the FATF and other FATF-style regional bodies. The FATF President and FATF Secretariat will attend APG meetings on the same basis that the APG Co-Chairs and Secretariat attend FATF meetings."
An Interconnected International Network
The APG, in conjunction with the FATF and the other regional anti-money laundering bodies (FATF-style regional bodies), constitute an affiliated global network to combat money laundering and the financing of terrorism. The other FATF-style regional bodies are:
- Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) based in Trinidad and Tobago;
- Eurasian Group (EAG) based in Moscow, Russia;
- Eastern & Southern Africa Anti-Money Laundering Group (ESAAMLG) based in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania;
- Task Force on Money Laundering in Central Africa (GABAC) based in Libreville, Gabon;
- Latin America Anti-Money Laundering Group (GAFILAT) [formerly South America Anti-Money Laundering Group (GAFISUD)] based in Bueno Aires, Argentina;
- West Africa Money Laundering Group (GIABA) based in Dakar, Senegal;
- Middle East and North Africa Financial Action Task Force (MENAFATF) based in Bahrain;
- Council of Europe Anti-Money Laundering Group (MONEYVAL) based in Strasbourg, France (Council of Europe).
The APG, FATF and the other 8 bodies, form an effective and close inter-connected network commited to reducing serious crime around the globe.
The APG, as well as these other regional bodies, use the FATF's 40 Recommendations as their principle guidelines for the implementation of effective AML/CFT standards and measures. The APG also uses similar mechanisms to those used by the FATF to monitor and facilitate progress for effectively implementing the international standards. Since its inception, the APG has worked closely with the FATF. The APG and FATF have reciprocal rights of attendance at each others meetings as well as reciprocal sharing of documents and participation in working groups. The APG and FATF are involved in joint mutual evaluations of common members of both organisations.
APG's Associate Membership in the FATF
In June 2006 the APG was granted Associate Membership in the FATF, which serves to deepen the cooperation between the APG and the FATF. This membership permits the APG to have direct access into the policy-making and standard-setting process of the FATF. The significance of this relates directly to non-FATF APG members who may now attend FATF plenary meetings as APG delegates.
But associate membership does not grant membership in the FATF to individual APG members. The status is granted to the APG as an organisation and consequently individual APG members who attend FATF meetings do so as "APG delegates" and therefore must represent the interests of the wider APG as an organisation.
Moreover, in July 2007 at the Annual Meeting of the APG in Perth, Australia a new rule was agreed that any FATF-style regional body admitted to the FATF as an Associate Member is automatically an observer in the APG. GAFISUD (now GAFILAT), MENAFATF, MONEYVAL and CFATF are APG observers on this basis, further enhancing international cooperation and commitment among regional and international bodies. EAG, GIABA and ESAAMLG became FATF Associate Members in 2010, and with that status, also became APG observers.