Edited by Felia Allum and Stan Gilmour
Chapter 29: The Financial Action Task Force: fighting transnational organised crime, money laundering, and the limits of experimentalist governance
Money laundering (ML) is central to the operations of transnational organised crime (TOC), and international cooperation to control ML is fundamental in the global policy toolkit to combat TOC. The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) anchors a complex global regime to control TOC through anti-ML regulation. Despite the FATF’s extensive reach, however, opportunities in the global economy for ML and TOC persist. The analytic lens of experimentalist governance (EG) illuminates both the functional elements and the inherent weaknesses of the FATF anti-ML regime and helps to explain this puzzle. While the FATF’s EG elements explain the regime’s resilience in global governance, certain aspects of EG actually hinder meaningful anti-money laundering control. The limitations of EG help to explain the pernicious persistence of ML and the difficulties states face in controlling TOC though this route, particularly as powerful states continue to reject policies that would actually eliminate offshore finance.
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