There seems to be a setback in the Federal government’s anti-corruption war as the European Union (EU) has added Nigeria to countries on its “dirty money blacklist”.
According to the EU, the countries in this category pose a threat because of tax controls on terrorism financing and money laundering.
Also added to the list which was initially 16, are Saudi Arabia, Panama, Libya, Botswana, Ghana, Samoa, the Bahamas and four US territories of American Samoa, U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Guam, Afghanistan, North Korea, Ethiopia, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Syria, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia and Yemen.
Reuters reports that the Criteria used to blacklist the countries include low sanctions against money laundering, terrorism financing, insufficient cooperation the EU on the matter and lack of transparency over the beneficial owners of companies and trusts
The list now includes 23 jurisdictions, with Bosnia Herzegovina, Guyana, Laos, Uganda and Vanuatu removed.
The 28 EU states have one month, which can be extended to two, to endorse the list.
The EU justice commissioner who proposed the list, Vera Jourova was quoted as saying she was confident states would not block it as it was urgent to act on the list because of the “risks spread like wildfire in the banking sector.”