What is FATF?

FATF, which is the acronym for the Financial Action Task Force, and also known by its French name, Groupe d’action financière (GAFI), is an inter-governmental policy-making organization founded in 1989 by the initiative of the G7. The FATF Secretariat, headquartered in Paris, is comprised of over 30 countries, and has a ministerial mandate to establish international standards for combating money laundering and terrorist financing.

The primary functions of the FATF are to monitor members’ progress in implementing necessary measures, review money laundering and terrorist financing techniques and counter-measures, and promote the adoption and implementation of appropriate measures globally. To date, over 180 jurisdictions have joined the FATF or a FATF‐style regional body, and committed at the ministerial level to implement FATF standards and evaluations. In performing its activities, the FATF collaborates with other international bodies involved in combating money laundering and  terrorism financing, and has established mutual evaluations (see monitoring implementation of the FATF recommendations.)

The FATF does not have a tightly defined constitution or an unlimited life span, and thus periodically reviews its mission. The current mandate of the FATF (for 2004-2012) was subject to a mid-term review and was approved and revised at a ministerial meeting in April 2008 (see FATF standards.)