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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

France: Money-Laundering Nations Need Sanctioning

PARIS -- Finance Minister Laurent Fabius said that France will work among the Group of Seven most industrialized nations, or G-7, to get financial sanctions against countries on a "black list" issued Thursday by an international task force on money-laundering.

Sanctions "could go as far as ending all financial relations, whatever they be," Fabius told reporters.

He said that France would make such a proposal to its G-7 partners at next month's summit in Japan.

France, which takes over the rotating European Union presidency in July, plans to organize an Oct. 15 meeting of the EU's 15 interior, justice and finance ministers "to examine precisely the financial sanctions to be taken against these fiscal paradises," Fabius said.

Among the 15 countries named by the Finance Action Task Force on Money Laundering, "there are countries whose populations we aid, but if they don't respect international rules, if they harbor international banditism, drugs trafficking of any sort, we cannot aid them. That is clear," the French finance minister said.

Addressing the issue of the Riviera principality of Monaco f not among the 15 on the "black list" but labeled a paradise favorable for money-laundering in a French parliamentary report f Fabius said he would seek a new report on the question from the French treasury.

Monaco's laws guarantee anonymity in banking transactions.

The report, made public Wednesday, recommended France review all the treaties dating back to 1641 linking it to the Mediterranean principality and to consider reducing financial subsidies Monaco receives from the French government from valued-added tax revenues on sales in the principality.

France bears partial responsibility in the matter, because Monaco's top civil servants and magistrates are appointed by France and the Bank of France oversees Monaco lending agencies.

Monaco said Wednesday it would not react to the report until at least next week.