Press Releases

HISTORIC PRESS RELEASE : UK revises financial adivsory against Antigua and Barbuda [July 2001]

The press release issued by the HM Treasury on 16 July 2001.

HM Treasury today issued revised advice to financial institutions on their dealings with persons and businesses domiciled in Antigua and Barbuda, following the introduction of improved regulation there.

Commenting on the announcement, the Economic Secretary to the Treasury, Ruth Kelly, said

“In recognition of regulatory improvements I have today revised the advice given to UK credit and financial institutions on their transactions and business relationships involving Antigua and Barbuda. We no longer believe that UK financial institutions need pay special attention to their dealings with persons or institutions domiciled in Antigua and Barbuda. From today UK financial institutions should apply normal due diligence procedures appropriate to transactions from jurisdictions that are not members of the Financial Action Task Force.

No system is perfect, and there is still significant room for improvement in Antigua. The UK Government will therefore continue to provide technical assistance to help the Antiguans meet the highest international standards in fighting money laundering. If implemented properly, we believe that Antigua and Barbuda has the mechanisms in place to guard against criminals taking advantage of its off-shore and on-shore financial systems.

The UK Government will continue to monitor the situation in Antigua, and will re-issue its original warnings if it believes that the new systems are not working properly.”

Foreign Office Minister, Baroness Amos said

“I welcome the decision to lift the advisory and congratulate Prime Minister Bird and the government of Antigua on the progress made in improving its legislative and regulatory regime in the international fight against money laundering.  We look forward to continued close co-operation with Antigua in this fight.”

The revised guidance is being sent out through the Joint Money Laundering Steering Group, and is available on the British Banking Association website.


1.The UK issued its original advisory to UK financial institutions in April 1999, following legislative changes to the anti-money laundering laws in Antigua and Barbuda that weakened the capacity of that jurisdiction to deal effectively with money laundering, and put the offshore sector there at risk from criminals. A copy is available from this website.

2.  Since then the Government of Antigua and Barbuda has undone many of the more detrimental legislative changes. Further improvements are planned. The Government has also taken steps to ensure the independence of the off-shore financial services sector regulatory authorities, and has strengthened the capacity of the financial intelligence unit to handle suspected money laundering cases.

3.These improvements were sufficient to ensure that Antigua and Barbuda was not listed by the FATF as a non-cooperative jurisdiction in the fight against money laundering. Details of this exercise are available on the FATF link below.