On 12 December 2019, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) published a speech by its Executive Secretary, David Lewis, at the 7th International Anti-Money Laundering and Compliance Conference.

Key messages in the speech include:

  • evaluation and follow-up processes will continue to be at the centre of what the FATF does. This year the FATF started a Strategic Review. This will look at what works best and what could be improved in the future. At its heart will be identifying and building on activity that promotes both effective and efficient anti-money laundering measures;
  • next year FATF will develop and publish best practices for the financial investigation of illegal wildlife trafficking and how to prevent and detect this through the financial system;
  • the FATF has just completed a public consultation on its first ever guidance for the use of digital ID. The final guidance is expected to be published in the coming months; and
  • whilst continuing to monitor the use of virtual assets by criminals and terrorists, the FATF is now working on the implications of stablecoins. It will be updating G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors on the FATF policy recommendations for dealing with stablecoins and the risks and opportunities from financial innovation more generally.