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The geopolitics of Pakistan’s 2018 greylisting by the Financial Action Task Force
International Journal  (IF0.836),  Pub Date : 2021-05-18, DOI: 10.1177/00207020211016481
Abdur Rehman Shah

This article argues that, in addition to the valid reasons for Pakistan’s greylisting by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) in 2018, geopolitical dynamics also played a crucial role behind this development. While the United States (US) under the Trump administration pushed Pakistan to seek an end to “the longest war” in Afghanistan, India, hoping to curb cross-border terrorism, capitalized on this momentum to pressure Pakistan. In order to hastily greylist Pakistan, institutional procedures of the FATF were thus disregarded. The case study demonstrates how economic coercion was used to push Pakistan to accept US and FATF demands. This article argues that Pakistan’s greylisting has created a win-for-all scenario for now. But these gains should not be overrated. Pakistan’s implementation of FATF requirements faces significant structural limitations. Still, the consensus between major actors underscores the potential of the FATF to counter money laundering and financing of terrorism globally.