The Vatican on Wednesday promised to redouble efforts against money laundering as it fights off a dark history after a Council of Europe report hailed recent progress but urged tighter controls. “The report released today is not an end, but a milestone in our continuing efforts,” the Holy See’s Under Secretary of State Ettore Balestrero, who headed the Vatican’s delegation to the Council of Europe, told reporters. “We obviously wish to strengthen the overall system,” he said. Balestrero said the report’s recommendations would be addressed “expeditiously and giving proof of effectiveness” and the Vatican will have to put together a progress report on compliance by July next year. The Vatican in the study released by Moneyval, the Council of Europe’s anti-money laundering body in Strasbourg, scored unsatisfactory ratings in seven out of 16 “key recommendations” and satisfactory ratings in nine. The report noted that the foundations for a more transparent financial system in the tiny Vatican state “are now formally in place,” adding: “The Holy See has come a long way in a very short period of time.” “But further important issues still need addressing in order to demonstrate that a fully effective regime has been instituted in practice,” it added.