Germany-based Basel Institute on Governance has ranked Nigeria as ‘a high-risk nation for money laundering and terrorism funding’ in the latest edition of its study titled; Basel AML Index 2022: 11th Public Edition – Ranking money laundering and terrorism funding concerns around the world.’
The study published, last Tuesday, placed Nigeria 17th out of 128 countries with a score of 6.77 out of 10.
The Basel Institute on Governance IS an independent, worldwide non-profit organization devoted to preventing and combating corruption; as well as other financial crimes and as strengthening governance around the world.
The Institute developed and maintains the Basel AML Index.
“Countries with high risks of ML/TF often suffer from high risks of environmental crime.
“When it comes to tackling dirty money; most countries are taking one step forward and four steps back; remaining too many steps behind criminals seeking to launder illicit funds.
“Eleven years since the first publication of the Basel AML Index;– a leading independent ranking of money laundering and terrorist financing risks in countries around the world; – progress in anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing remains paralysed.
“The average global money laundering risk according to this year’s Index is stuck at 5.25 out of 10, where 10 is the maximum risk level, ” the study read in parts.
While further indicting the Nigerian government for ‘not keeping up the pace to catch up with criminals, who kept innovating,’ the report said that many countries including Nigeria were not doing enough to tackle the issue of money laundering and terrorist financing.
“The good news is that governments, as well as financial institutions and other reporting entities, are generally getting better at assessing their risks of money laundering and applying a risk-based approach to address them.
“But in areas where criminals are moving fast and innovating, authorities are dragging their feet. The crypto sphere is one: average levels of compliance with international standards on risks from virtual assets are dropping dramatically as more countries are assessed,” the report read.