Vatican City, 29 July 2013 (VIS) – On 26 July the Financial Intelligence Authority (AIF) of the Holy See and Vatican City State signed a Memorandum of Understanding with its Italian counterpart, the Unità di Informazione Finanziaria (UIF) of the Bank of Italy, according to a memorandum published today.

The Memorandum was signed in Rome by Cardinal Attilio Nicora, President of AIF, and Dr. Claudio Clemente, director of UIF.

A Memorandum of Understanding is standard practice and formalizes the cooperation and exchange of financial information to fight money laundering and terrorist financing across borders between the competent authorities of both countries. It is based on the model Memorandum of Understanding prepared by the Egmont Group, the global organisation of national Financial Intelligence Units, and contains clauses on reciprocity, permitted uses of information and confidentiality.

“The Holy See and the Vatican City State take international responsibilities concerning Anti-Money Laundering and the Financing of Terrorism very seriously, and Italy is an especially important partner for us,” said AIF director Rene Bruelhart. “We look forward to continuing our work with the Italian Authorities in a constructive and fruitful manner. The Memorandum of Understanding is a clear commitment to strengthen our bilateral relationship and will facilitate the our joint efforts and fight against money laundering.”

AIF became a member of the Egmont Group in July of this year and over the last several months signed MOUs with the Financial Intelligence Units of the United States, Belgium, Spain, Slovenia and the Netherlands. More are expected to be signed in the course of this year.

AIF is the competent authority of the Holy See/Vatican City State to fight money laundering and financing of terrorism. It was established on Dec. 30, 2010.

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