2017 Mutual Evaluation
The Cook Islands received a very positive Mutual Evaluation Report for their 2017/2018 mutual evaluation by the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG) which was published on 22 October 2018. The Commission was the lead agency for the Cook Islands mutual evaluation.
The Cook Islands has been rated one of the best in the world for technical compliance with 38 out of the 40 FATF Recommendations receiving Largely Compliant or Compliant. In terms of the implementation and effectiveness of its laws and systems when measured against the FATF’s 11 Immediate Outcomes, the Cook Islands attained 5 substantial ratings, 4 moderate ratings and 2 low ratings. This resulted in the Cook Islands being one of only three jurisdictions within the APG membership to be placed in the “regular” follow up process, a very rare achievement.
This outstanding result for the Cook Islands has been achieved through the commitment and hard work of the Cook Islands government, its crown agencies and the private sector. It is anticipated that the Cook Islands’ MER will be recognised internationally, given its independence and comprehensive nature, whilst giving great comfort to governments, institutions and businesses alike when dealing with the Cook Islands and its financial services industry. The published Mutual Evaluation Report can be read and downloaded here.
2009 Mutual Evaluation
The Cook Islands Mutual Evaluation on-site visit in February 2009 was led by the Asia-Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG) jointly with the Offshore Group on Banking Supervisors (OGBS) (renamed the Group of International Finance Centre Supervisors (GIFCS) on 1st April 2011). Experts in the legal, financial and law enforcement sectors met with relevant government departments and private sector agencies to evaluate the Cook Islands' level of compliance and effectiveness in implementing the global AML/CFT standards (FATF 40 + 9 Recommendations) in combating money laundering and terrorism financing.
The evaluation team found that the standard of regulation in the Cook Islands is very high. Only Singapore and the USA received better evaluation reports in the Pacific region. In terms of comparison to other jurisdictions, the mutual evaluation report places the Cook Islands in the top 16% of all the jurisdictions around the world. As in other independent reports, the evaluation finds that the risk of money laundering in the Cook Islands is very small, and that of terrorist financing is almost non-existant.
The full report is available here.