In an official publication released on 7th January 2022, The European Commission has proceeded to withdraw/remove Mauritius from their list of High Risk Third countries (often referred to as the EU Blacklist). The EU commission cited that it is satisfied that Mauritius has met the requirements laid out by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) to improve its AML/CFT regulatory framework to mitigate the strategic deficiencies that were previously identified.
The EU Commission stated: “The FATF welcomed significant progress made by Botswana, Ghana and Mauritius in improving its AML/CFT regime and noted that Botswana, Ghana and Mauritius have established the legal and regulatory framework to meet the commitments in their action plans regarding the strategic deficiencies that the FATF had identified.” The commission further stated: “These measures are sufficiently comprehensive and meet the necessary requirements to consider that strategic deficiencies identified under article 9 of the Directive (EU) 2015/849 have been removed”.
The Act will be published in the EU Official Journal and it will come into force 20 days after the publication, provided that there is no objection by Parliament and the European Council.
Mauritius has shown its ongoing commitment to strengthening its AML/CFT framework and processes and was removed from the FATF’s list of Jurisdictions under Increased Monitoring (the grey list) in October 2021. Mauritius was also removed from the UK’s list of High-Risk countries in November 2021.
Exiting the EU blacklist will come as a relief to the Mauritian economy and for its global businesses. This welcome decision further solidifies Mauritius as an attractive and compliant jurisdiction for international business.