Legitimacy of the Summer 2017
GCC crisis and Qatar’s AML
Mohammed Ahmad Naheem
Mayfair Compliance, London, UK
Purpose –In June 2017, members of the GulfCooperation Council (GCC) ended diplomatic ties with Qatar.
There is a legitimate concern aboutthe accusation levied on Qatar. This paper aims to analyse the progress
Qatar’sﬁnancial system has made with respect to its anti-money laundering (AML) and counter-terrorist
ﬁnancing (CFT) regulations, which further serves as the country’s effort to combating the ﬁnancing of
terrorism (CTF). The paper further wishesto advance the discussion by considering the legitimate goals of
the aforementioned bodies and their discourse on creating national and international obligations towards
reducingterrorist ﬁnancing through robust AML frameworks.
Design/methodology/approach –The paper analyses Qa tar’s legislative and regulatory overhaul
following the Financial Action Task Force’s Mutual Evaluation Report. Qatar h ad distinctively
strengthened its approach against Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing. The paper takes an ex
ante approach by understanding Qatar’s“strategic deﬁciencies”before the FATF’s mutual evaluation.
Subsequently, the paper studies independent international evaluations of Qatar’s AML/CTF legislation
Findings –The paper ﬁnds Qatar in signiﬁcant compliance to the recommendations of the various
international bodies, including the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), Basel AML Index, IMF’sﬁnancial
sector reviews,United Nations and independent reports on AML progressfrom regulatory bodies around the
world. None of these organizations present obligatory rules but have set and determined and international
standardfor AML/CTF laws.
Originality/value –The primary aim is to draw parallels between Qatar’s regulatory AML and CTF
efforts through the country’s compliancewith international initiatives, such as the FATF guidelines, Basel
AML Index, IMF’sﬁnancial sector reviews,United Nations and independent reports on AML progress from
regulatorybodies around the world.
Keywords Qatar, Anti Money Laundering (AML), Countering Financing of Terrorism (CFT),
Financial intelligence unit, The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)
Paper type Research paper
The Gulf Cooperation Council(GCC) was originally set up in 1981 to create a single common
market and monetary system for the six members of the Council,essentially converting the
The author explicitly states that this research article is not a propaganda piece and in no way has the
author received any form of funding or assistance from any party towards this piece of research. This
paper sets out an approach to extend the discussion on the Qatar GCC crisis from an independent
academic perspective, employing tools that separate AML/CTF analysis from media opinion.
Please note that this paper was composed and submitted for review to this journal in July 2017. All
the content was current at that point in time (July 2017). The regulation industry is constantly
evolving with new research emerging and being published. These points need to be taken into
consideration when reading this paper.
Journalof Money Laundering
Vol.20 No. 4, 2017
© Emerald Publishing Limited
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