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Vatican amends financial law amid Moneyval inspection

Vatican amends financial law amid Moneyval inspection

The Vatican unveiled changes to a landmarklaw on transparency, supervision, and financial intelligence Saturday, saying that the move would strengthen oversight of financial flows.

The Holy See press office published the text of adecreeOct. 10 by Cardinal Giuseppe Bertello, president of the Governorate of Vatican City State, amending the 2013 law.

The changes came amid atwo-week on-site inspectionof the Holy See and Vatican City by Moneyval, the Council of Europe’s anti-money laundering watchdog.

There has been a flurry of activity since the inspection began, with the Vatican’s Secretariat for the Economyreleasingthe 2019 balance sheet for the Roman Curia Oct. 1, the day after inspectors arrived.

The new 15-page decree altersLaw XVIII, dated Oct. 8., 2013, which set out provisions to combat money laundering and the financing of terrorism.

Carmelo Barbagallo, president of the Vatican’s Financial Information Authority (AIF), said that the changes updated the 2013 law to reflect evolving international standards.

“The latest amendments to Law XVIII are part of an overall strategy aimed at making the management of Vatican finances ever more transparent, within a framework of intensive andcoordinatedcontrols,” he said.

Barbagallo said the amendments were the latest development in a process that began with the creation of the AIF in 2010 and included the promulgation of alaw on the awarding of public contractson June 1 this year, as well asan Aug. 19 ordinance requiring “volunteer organizations and juridical persons of Vatican City State” to report suspicious activities to the AIF.

He explained that the new provisions sought to tightenregulation of financial flows within the Vatican.

He said: “For my part, I am convinced that the changes made to this Law, as well as all the regulations enacted in these past few years, will be able to demonstrate, both internally and to external observers, the firm commitment on a matter on which the Church takes an irreversible position.”

Meanwhile, the composition of theCardinals’ Commissionof the Institute for Works of Religion (IOR), commonly known as the Vatican bank, has changed. Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican Secretary of State, is no longer a member of the commission.

The body is now composed of five cardinals: Cardinal Santos Abril y Castelló, the commission’s president; Christoph Schönborn of Vienna; Cardinal Giuseppe Petrocchi ofL’Aquila; Cardinal Konrad Krajewski, papal almoner; and Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples.

Petrocchi, Krajewski, and Tagle are new to the commission. They replace Parolin, Cardinal Thomas Collins of Toronto, and Cardinal Josip Bozani? of Zagreb.

The cardinals’ commission convenes at least bi-annuallyand oversees the IOR’s compliance with its statutory norms, according to the manner provided for in its by-laws.

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