Ro Filipe says proposed amendments will have ‘serious impacts on Fijians

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Ro Filipe Tuisawau speaking in parliament. Picture: Parliament of Fiji

Opposition Whip Ro Filipe Tuisawau claims the proposed amendments to the Financial Transactions Reporting Act 2004 will have serious implications for the Fijian people.

He made the comment during a debate on the Financial Transactions Reporting Amendment Bill which was brought to Parliament by Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum yesterday.

“The draft there which is presented, 1.7, when you read 1.7 from ‘A to D’, those have serious implications,” Ro Filipe said.

“For example, redefining cash to mean currency notes and coins only — what is this based on?

“That needs to be clearly explained and also the threshold from $5000 to $10,000 and ‘C’ the requirement of financial institutions — this has implications on their processes and procedures internally — forms to fill, reconfiguring their software systems et cetera. Has this been taken into consideration?

“The other issue here is remittances is now a major income earner in the nation, so has anything been done to assess the implications of this on remittances, those who are sending remittances into the country.”

In his response to comments by the Opposition, Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said members of the public would not be affected by the proposed changes unless they were engaged in illicit activities.

“If you’re a member of the public and you’re trying to bypass the system, trying to bring in money illegally, trying to do cash transactions, then you’ll be concerned,” the A-G said.

“Still, it has no implications on you in terms of your daily transactions, your ability to transact.”

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