Vatican bank asks Italy to normalise relations after reforms

Wednesday 22 January 2014 10.53
Vatican Bank says it has made great progress with new anti-money laundering provisions
Vatican Bank says it has made great progress with new anti-money laundering provisions

The Vatican bank asked Italy today to resume normal banking relations, which have been effectively frozen since 2010.

It said it had made great progress with new anti-money laundering provisions.

"The bank looks forward to a resumption of full interaction with Italian financial institutions pending review by Italian regulatory authorities of the Holy See and Vatican City State's anti-money laundering provisions," a report said.

Italian banks stopped dealing with the Vatican bank in 2010 after the central bank told them they had to enforce strict anti-money laundering criteria if they wanted to continue transacting with it.
              
A status report on the bank's reform efforts also said the head of the bank ordered several special investigations in 2013 into suspicious accounts as part of its programme to improve transparency and thwart more attempts to launder money.
              
The bank, officially known as the Institute for Works of Religion (IOR), also said it would soon be undergoing a non-sight inspection by the Vatican's financial authority, which was one of the requests made last month by the Council of Europe.
              
The report was prepared for the bank's Board of Superintendence, which is made up of five internationally known non-cleric businessmen and bankers from Germany, Italy, the US and Spain.