National Assembly approves Anti-Money Laundering Amendment Bill 2020

National Assembly (NA) approved Anti-Money Laundering (AML) 2nd Amendment Bill 2020, on Monday.

National Assembly’s Standing Committee under Faiz Ullah Kamoka on Finance has approved Anti-Money Laundering 2nd Amendment Bill 2020 amidst intense protest from opposition benches.

The bill was approved with a majority of nine votes, whereas six votes opposed the bill.

Opposition parties have accused government of political victimization via National Accountability Bureau (NAB) as according to the approved bill money laundering is now a cognizable offence.

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Possession of unexplainable jewellery and real estate are also included in the provisions of the bill. Meanwhile, the penalty for money laundering has been increased from Rs5 million to Rs25 million for an individual, whereas for a company, institution or an organization the penalty limit has been raised up to Rs 100 million.

Organizations will be obliged to keep a five-year record of their financial transactions and dealings and will be subjected to extensive investigation relevant authorities in case of any dubious financial dealings.

According to Lubna Farooq – Director General (DG) Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU), that the inclusion of NAB in government efforts against money laundering will significantly improve anti-money laundering operations and cases.