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The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) is the custodian of global anti-money laundering and counterterrorist finance (AML/CTF) controls. Its framework of 40 Recommendations and its process of Mutual Evaluation Reports aim to curtail illicit finance while also promoting financial inclusion. This project seeks to establish how FATF has affected financial inclusion, highlighting where the Task Force has frustrated, and where it has facilitated the process.
Acknowledging that digital tools have played a transformational role in accelerating financial inclusion, our project places a special emphasis on understanding the role that digital financial services play in banking for disadvantaged groups such as women and rural populations. The outcomes of this project are aimed at international standard-setters, national policymakers and compliance professionals who implement the FATF framework.
Aims and objectives
This project aims to better understand how the FATF framework has affected financial inclusion, and suggests ways in which any negative impact can be rectified. It does so by examining the following research questions:
- How have the different elements of the FATF framework interacted with financial inclusion objectives?
- How is financial inclusion perceived and prioritised by assessed countries throughout the Mutual Evaluation Reports process?
- How compatible is the FATF system with digital tools for financial inclusion?
To explore these questions, the project team conducted extensive interviews throughout 2020. The interviews involved stakeholders from international organisations, national policymakers, private sector organisations, NGOs and academics. The project team also conducted three case studies in Tanzania, Pakistan and Indonesia.
In 2021, the project team will publish two papers. The first will detail the findings of its research, looking specifically at what the impact of FATF has been on the digital financial inclusion of disadvantaged groups. The second will look to the future to suggest how FATF can carve out a new, more positive interaction with financial inclusion objectives.
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
This project is supported by The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.Find out more
Access key publications produced as part of this project.