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FATF financial crime watchdog adds Kenya and Namibia to its ‘grey list’

People walk on the Pedestrian Bridge at the Bluewaters Island in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, December 08, 2021.

Satish Kumar | Reuters

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) international crime watchdog on Friday added Kenya and Namibia to its ‘grey list’ of countries that need increased monitoring, due to inadequate curbs against money laundering and terrorism financing.

“At this Plenary, the FATF added Kenya and Namibia to the list of jurisdictions subject to increased monitoring,” said the FATF in a statement.

Kenya’s Treasury had already said earlier on Friday that it had been put on the ‘grey list’. It said it was fully committed to implementing the FATF’s action plan and that the move would only have ‘minimal effects’ on Kenya’s financial stability.

A report from the FATF last year said Kenya mainly faced risks from flows of money linked to terrorism financing from both inside and outside its borders, while cryptocurrencies posed further risks.

There are several militant groups operating in the region around Kenya, including the al Shabaab group in neighboring Somalia, which is linked to al Qaeda and has launched several attacks in Kenya in the past.

Namibia’s Financial Intelligence Centre said earlier on Friday that putting Namibia on the ‘grey list’ could have negative impacts on Namibia’s foreign direct investment.

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