16 Oct 2002

Cook Islands faces delays in attempts to get off blacklist

11:51 am on 16 October 2002

The Cook Islands faces further delays in its attempts to be taken off a money laundering blacklist after the International Monetary Fund postponed a visit.

The Cook islands commissioner for offshore banking, Mathilda Uhrle, says officials from the IMF were to review the money laundering act next month and then provide assistance to redraft the highly specialised legislation.

She says it was hoped that this would satisfy the Financial Action Task Force which had placed the Cook Islands on the blacklist more than two years ago.

Ms Uhrle says the IMF informed her this morning that the visit would be delayed until early next year.

"I think that the cook islands will have to re - think its game quite seriously, and look at off shore jurisdictions in the world that faces the same kind of issues in terms of the FATF listing process and literally just proceed as best we can."

The Marshall Islands and Niue have both just been taken off the money laundering blacklist.