The Department of Revenue, Ministry of Finance, is hosting the APG Annual Typologies Workshop in association with Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG) and the World Bank from 28th November to 1st December, 2023 in New Delhi.
Yearly typologies workshops are held by the APG to bring together experts and APG delegates to discuss money laundering and terrorist financing trends as well as policy issues emerging from those trends. These workshops have topical ‘themes’ to provide a focus for the discussion. Twenty-three typologies workshops have been held since the APG’s formation in 1997. After 2018, this is the first in-person workshop. A total of 26 jurisdictions are participating in the workshop.
The workshop began with a welcome address by Vivek Aggarwal, Additional Secretary (Department of Revenue) and Head of the Indian Delegation to Financial Action Task Force (FATF), followed by adoption of yearly typologies report on money laundering (ML), terrorism financing (TF), and proliferation financing (PF) trends. The report features a focus section on virtual assets and virtual asset service providers, in recognition of the threat they pose for ML, TF, and PF.
Further, the workshop is divided into three broad streams – Virtual Assets (VA), Illegal Phishing, and Tax Crimes. World Bank is delivering an ML/Tax Crimes Training Exercise and will cover various facets – ‘whole-of-government’ approach in taxing crime, various sources of information, beneficial ownership, tax crimes as predicate offence, international cooperation, organisation of evidence and typologies.
The Virtual Assets/Virtual Assets Service Providers Stream will be focusing on the risk assessment, private sector perspective through VASPs participation, terrorism financing and proliferation financing through VA, law enforcement case studies, etc.
Illegal phishing is a less discussed issue and the financial dimensions of illegal fishing pose a complex challenge for law enforcement due to a number of factors, including a lack of understanding of the transnational nature of this crime; weak international coordination on illegal proceeds of illegal phishing; and absence of parallel financial investigations. The APG issued paper on illegal phishing will be taken up for discussion and adoption during the workshop.
APG is one of the Financial Action Task Force-Style Regional Bodies (FSRBs) and is the largest with 42 members in terms of membership numbers and geographical size. The APG also has a large number of observers (both jurisdictions and supporting organisations) that participate in its programmes and activities. Some of the key international organisations that support the APG include the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, OECD, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, the UN’s Counter Terrorism Executive Directorate, Asian Development Bank, Commonwealth Secretariat, INTERPOL and the Egmont Group of Financial Intelligence Units.