Caribbean nations miffed over US label as money launderers

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GEORGETOWN, Guyana: The 15-nation Caribbean community is angry at the United States for labeling virtually all members of the regional trade bloc as money laundering jurisdictions and plans to mount a stiff lobbying effort in Washington, its leader said on Friday (Saturday in Manila). CARICOM Secretary General Irwin La Rocque said the United States’s listing 14 member states in its 2016 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report could have devastating effects on the region. Most of the countries have economies heavily dependent on tourism and financial services such as offshore banking and economic citizenships. He said that when CARICOM foreign ministers meet in Barbados next month, they would prepare the groundwork to intensify regional lobbying efforts that individual member states have already begun in Washington. Listed as “major money laundering countries” in the INCS report are Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago. Other Caribbean territories and countries also labeled as money launderers are Aruba, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Cuba, Curacao, the Dominican Republic and Saint Maarten.

AFP

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