Putrajaya setting up centre to curb money laundering

Abu Kassim Mohamed. (Bernama pic)

PUTRAJAYA: The Government has agreed to set up the National Financial Crime Centre (NFCC) in an effort to tackle money laundering.

National Governance, Integrity and Anti-Corruption Centre (GIACC) director-general Abu Kassim Mohamed said the matter was decided at a recent Cabinet committee meeting on anti-corruption.

He said the government viewed seriously the illegal outflow of cash from the country, estimated to reach billions of ringgit each year.

“This issue needs to be addressed seriously and the government wants the initiative involving various agencies to be implemented immediately.

“We hope the NFCC will operate as soon as possible after the necessary laws have been enacted,” he said during a press conference held in conjunction with the “Report on the Year-End Achievement in the War Against Corruption in Malaysia” for the June-December 2018 period here today.

Also present was Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission chief commissioner Mohd Shukri Abdull.

Abu Kassim said to ensure the successful establishment of the NFCC, the government had agreed to create a special team led by a senior government official for planning purposes.

Expecting the centre to be operational by the middle of next year, he said its establishment involved the coordination of the MACC, Customs Department, Immigration Department and Bank Negara Malaysia. The first meeting on this was held today.

Meanwhile, Shukri said the MACC would propose the use of a new law on beneficial ownership to curb the problem of contractors not implementing the projects themselves.

In the past, many of the projects obtained by the main contractor are given to sub-contractors. These sub-contractors, in turn, hand it over to another party.

“This has resulted in the poor quality of projects which eventually affects many parties, especially buyers or recipients,” he said, adding that the law would only focus on government projects.