Malta considering Italy, UK models for fighting against economic-crime

Edward Scicluna. Photo: Flickr

Following reports of Malta’s anti-money laundering agency receiving a poor evaluation in draft Moneyval evaluation, the Finance Minister has said that the country is looking at the UK and Italy models for upgrading the system.

Speaking to the press, Finance Minister Edward Scicluna said that the island country has stand-alone institutions as of now and thus they have had discussions with officials in UK and Italy to study their set up.

Scicluna added that they are looking at the whole institutional set-up in these countries and if any changes are required in the Maltese set-up, they will be considered.

However, the Finance Minister also said that Moneyval and the European Banking Authority are pleased with the way scandals were handled by authorities in Malta.

“In the case of Satabank, for Moneyval and the EBA it was good that we caught them and took action. They are not going to be scandalised because it happened,” he was quoted as saying by Times of Malta.

Scicluna asserted that instead of looking at the Moneyval scores, the country should focus on the progress made so far in strengthening the institutions.

He said that the foreign institutions want to see the local institutions in Malta working properly and the fact that 12,000 accounts were frozen by Malta Financial Services Authority in the aftermath of Satabank suspicious transactions will put Malta in the good books.