Blacklisted: France penalise Dominica, T&T for not helping in fraud investigation
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (CMC):
Two Caribbean Community countries Dominica and Trinidad and Tobago have been added to a list of countries blacklisted by France.
The two are making plans to get clarification from France on the matter, after learning today that Paris blacklisted them for not helping to investigate foreign aid fraud.
Dominica’s Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit told reporters that he intends on writing to the French government on the matter, adding that he was “shocked” that the island had been put on the blacklist.
“It has taken us by total shock and surprise of that news item coming out of Paris. We believe that there is no basis and justification for that action, if it were to be true,” Skerrit said.
Skerrit said Dominica has implemented a number of measures to the satisfaction of its peers in respect to efforts to combat money laundering and improving the banking system in Dominica.
Earlier, Trinidad and Tobago Finance Minister Larry Howai, in a statement, questioned the legitimacy of the categorisation indicating that there are no grounds for including Trinidad and Tobago on such a list.
Howai said he is confident that the controls which exist in the banking and regulatory systems in Trinidad and Tobago compared favourably with those in any other jurisdiction.
Howai said he was attaching the highest priority to getting the fullest understanding of the circumstances behind the reported remarks by the Minister for Aid Development, and by extension the government of France.
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