SBP warns public against dealing with illegal forex operators

KARACHI: The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has warned the general public against sale and purchase through illegal operators and transfer of foreign currency through hawala and hundi.

The SBP informed the public that a person may unknowingly become part of money laundering and terrorism financing offence by dealing with illegal foreign exchange operators.

“Money laundering and terrorism financing offences are punishable under the Anti Money Laundering (AML) Act, 2010, and Anti Terrorism Act (ATA), 1997,” the SBP said in a statement on Friday. “It is advised in your self-interest to carry foreign currency sale, purchase and remittance transactions only with SBP-authorized banks and exchange companies.”

The SBP further advised the public to always collect system generated official receipt of transactions. “If a person comes across any illegal foreign exchange sale/purchase and hawala/hundi operators, he/she should immediately report to the Federal Investigation Agency.”

Business of foreign exchange in Pakistan is regulated under Foreign Exchange Regulation Act (FERA), 1947.

The SBP issues authorisation to banks and exchange companies to conduct foreign exchange business. Any person (individual or entity) other than those authorized by the SBP are illegal under FERA 1947 and AMLA 2010.

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