Directorate Of Enforcement (ED) Hosts Inaugural Bilateral Meeting with Nepal to Combat Money Laundering

(Judicial Quest News Network)

New Delhi, May 8th, 2024 – The Directorate of Enforcement (ED) in New Delhi orchestrated a landmark two-day bilateral meeting on May 7th and 8th, 2024, welcoming a distinguished delegation from Nepal led by Mr. Pushpa Raj Shahi, Director General of the Department of Money Laundering Investigation (DMLI).

Marking the first-ever head-of-agency level meeting between India and Nepal’s anti-money laundering authorities, the gathering aimed to foster reciprocal collaboration and bolster capacity-building initiatives concerning money laundering and asset recovery efforts.

Under the guidance of the ED’s Director (in-charge), the meeting convened high-ranking officials from both the ED and DMLI, alongside representatives from the Indian Embassy in Kathmandu, the Nepal Embassy in New Delhi, and the Ministry of External Affairs, New Delhi.

Throughout the deliberations, delegates from both nations provided comprehensive insights into their respective anti-money laundering legislative frameworks, exchanging strategies to combat the perils of money laundering. Case studies were shared, and discussions cantered on identifying common patterns in money laundering schemes.

The ED elucidated the array of investigative tools, analytical software, and forensic equipment employed in combating money laundering activities. Emphasizing the global ramifications of money laundering, it was underscored that such illicit practices not only jeopardize security but also undermine the transparency and efficacy of financial systems, thereby impeding economic prosperity.

Acknowledging the shared risk posed by porous borders, both parties committed to fortifying cooperation in anti-money laundering endeavours and countering the financing of terrorism. This commitment entails heightened information sharing, expedited dissemination of evidence and information for money laundering and terrorist financing investigations, and adherence to Financial Action Task Force (FATF) standards to safeguard financial systems from abuse.

Responding to a request from DMLI, the ED pledged assistance in establishing forensic laboratories akin to its own facilities and organizing capacity-building programs for DMLI officers. Moreover, both agencies pledged to augment agency-to-agency cooperation through informal channels, focusing on money laundering and asset recovery.

As a significant stride toward deeper collaboration, a draft Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) outlining enhanced cooperation in money laundering investigations between the ED and DMLI was deliberated upon, with plans for formal signing pending requisite approvals from competent authorities.

The meeting concluded with expressions of gratitude from the Director (in-charge) of the ED and the Director General of DMLI, marking a pivotal moment in bilateral efforts to combat financial crimes and uphold the integrity of financial systems.

By fostering such dialogues and collaborations, both India and Nepal underscore their shared commitment to combatting financial crimes and safeguarding their respective economies from the scourge of money laundering.

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