Stung by reputation, Taiwan looks to turn corner on money laundering

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fter Taiwan’s state-run Mega Financial Holding Co was fined $180 million by U.S. authorities for lax enforcement of anti-money-laundering rules at its New York branch, the bank started a rigorous training program for its staff.

Now, like Mega Financial, companies across Taiwan are working to get staff and systems up to speed after the island passed laws to meet international standards on combating money laundering and was taken off a watchlist by the Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG).

“Unfortunately, Taiwan has earned a name for itself as a paradise for money laundering,” Deputy Justice Minister Tsai Pi-chung told Reuters.

Money laundering and cybercrime connections to Taiwan, which is also in the process of pushing through a cyber security bill, have grabbed global headlines.

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