Client Alert: Barbados Reacts to EU designation for inclusion on future blacklist
20 May 2020
Barbados’ Attorney General has made a strong statement against the EU’s “regrettable and unjust” decision to earmark Barbados for inclusion in a blacklist which the EU intends to publish more than four months from now.
The EU’s selection of Barbados is based on a review of Barbados’ anti-money laundering (AML) regime for a period ending in 2018. Notably, that review interval is now historical and the status quo then has since been overtaken by several significant enhancements to the local regime. Indeed, among several other robust comments, the Attorney General has referred to the diligent progress which Barbados has made with further developing its AML regime since 2018.
Indeed, at Lex Caribbean, we operate daily within Barbados’ AML regime and have observed, time and time again, that our regime has long been more stringent in its requirements than that of many jurisdictions which house major financial centres; feature economies which are gargantuan by comparison to the Barbados economy; and which have not been attacked by the EU.
The Attorney General has invited the EU to enter into discussions with Barbados on the matter, while underscoring that given the economic privation seen globally in the COVID-19 pandemic context, it is particularly inappropriate for the EU to have taken this step with no prior consultation.