FATF publishes report on money laundering and terrorist financing in the art and antiquities markets 

Criminals, organized crime groups, and terrorists may use the market for art, antiquities, and other cultural objects to launder criminal proceeds and fund their activities. Criminals seek to exploit the sector’s history of privacy and reliance on third-party intermediaries, whereas terrorist organizations can use cultural objects from regions where they are active to fund their operations. The majority of market participants are not involved in illegal activities, but there are risks associated with these markets, and many jurisdictions do not have sufficient awareness and understanding of them.

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an intergovernmental organisation established in 1989 on the initiative of the G7 to develop policies to combat money laundering and terrorism financing, has conducted investigations in this area. A newly published report by the FATF concludes that the art and antiquities markets lack of investigative resources and expertise to combat money laundering and terrorism financing risks. In addition, the report concludes that difficulties in conducting international investigations persist.

Therefore, the FATF’s report includes a list of risk indicators that might help public and private sector entities identify suspicious activities in the art and antiquities markets, and highlights the importance of rapidly identifying and tracing cultural objects involved in money laundering or terrorist financing.

The FATF emphasises that the report includes some good practices that countries have taken to address the challenges they face, including the establishment of specialised units and access to relevant databases and cooperation with experts and archaeologists to help identify, trace, investigate and repatriate cultural objects.

These are the upcoming dates for our Annual General Meetings:

Thursday, 21 March 2024
Thursday, 20 March 2025