The Central Bank of Solomon Islands (CBSI) Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) will be better networked with other Pacific FIUs and better able to combat the ongoing impacts of COVID-19, thanks to AUSTRAC’s gifting of video conferencing equipment to the FIU. AUSTRAC is the Australian Government agency responsible for detecting, deterring and disrupting criminal financial activities.
The video conferencing equipment provides the tools to enable the Solomon Islands FIU to reliably attend virtual meetings, international forums, training, webinars and access remote technical assistance.
AUSTRAC is committed to supporting its partners in the Pacific region to counter the threats of money-laundering, terrorism financing, cyber-crime and serious organized crime, particularly relating to narcotics and corruption. The provision of this equipment is one way in which AUSTRAC is supporting Solomon Islands to address these challenges, in light of the ongoing restrictions on international engagement caused by COVID-19. AUSTRAC looks forward to again working directly with Solomon Islands’ FIU when restrictions lift.
At the gifting ceremony on 16 September 2021, Counsellor Economic, Andrew Schloeffel highlighted the importance of collaboration between AUSTRAC and the CBSI FIU in countering financial crime and supporting the secure and sustainable growth of Solomon Islands’ financial sector.
“The global pandemic continues to be a period of economic upheaval and one that people involved in financial crime have and will continue to take advantage of. This adds to the importance of Australia and Solomon Islands working together on anti-money laundering, counter terrorism financing, narcotics trafficking and anti-corruption measures,” he said.
CBSI Governor Dr Luke Forau thanked the Australian High Commission on behalf of AUSTRAC. Dr Forau said “AUSTRAC’s collaboration with Pacific Island countries, including Solomon Islands, to counter the threats of financial crime in our region is very important. This equipment comes at the right time for the CBSI FIU. Our officers will be better placed to face the disruptions of the COVID-19 pandemic and continue collaboration and communication with AUSTRAC and other Pacific partners across the region. We will ensure it is put to good use.”
AUSTRAC is a longstanding partner to Solomon Islands FIU and looks forward to continued partnership and collective efforts in providing financial security for the Pacific region.
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