Press Releases

Singapore Announces Five-Pronged Strategy to Counter the Financing of Terrorism

Published: 07 October 2022

1.   Singapore today published a five-pronged strategy to prevent, detect, investigate, and enforce against terrorism financing (TF). The National Strategy for Countering the Financing of Terrorism (CFT) provides a roadmap for the development of future action plans to combat TF.  

2.   The National CFT Strategy was formulated based on findings from a holistic assessment of TF risks conducted in 2020. Singapore’s key TF threats are posed by regional and international terrorist groups as well as radicalised individuals, as they raise, move and use financial resources for terrorism purposes. Payment service providers carrying out cross-border money transfers and banks are inherently more vulnerable to TF threats, given the relative ease and speed with which their services may be used, coupled with Singapore being a financial and transport hub, and our proximity to countries exposed to terrorism activities. 

3.   The National CFT Strategy seeks to enhance coordination across law enforcement agencies, policy makers, regulators, supervisory agencies, and the private sector. Relevant law enforcement, policy, and supervisory agencies have adopted action plans as guided by the National CFT Strategy.[1] 

4.   The five points of the National CFT Strategy are: 

(i)   Coordinated and Comprehensive Risk Identification 
•   Adopt a whole-of-Government approach. Agencies should coordinate tightly, through for example, already well-established cooperation committees and networks. 
•   Review our TF landscape regularly, taking into account current and emerging typologies, international standards and requirements, and inputs from the private sector and academia.  

(ii)   Strong Legal and Sanctions Frameworks
•   Ensure a comprehensive legal framework to enable law enforcement authorities to take swift and effective action against terrorists, terrorist organisations and their supporters, including financiers of terrorism.  
•   Ensure that our financial sanctions framework remains in line with international standards and conventions, and supported by a clear policy framework to identify and designate terrorists.

(iii)   Robust Regulatory Regime and Risk Targeted Supervisory Framework
•   Ensure that our anti-money laundering/CFT regulatory framework remains robust, and our risk focused supervisory framework is effective and aligned with international standards and best practices. 
•   Further strengthen the private sector’s awareness of TF risks and CFT controls through targeted outreach, industry guidance and risk-focused supervision by sector supervisors such as MAS and MinLaw. 
•   Enhance surveillance and supervisory measures through the use of data analytics and technological tools to draw insights from data sources, as well as to detect and target higher risk activities and entities that may be involved in or exposed to TF activities. 

(iv)   Decisive Law Enforcement Actions
•   Strengthen inter-agency collaboration to ensure all instances of TF are promptly detected and investigated.
•   Expand collaboration with private sector to better detect and disrupt TF activities.
•   Ensure that investigative efforts translate into successful prosecutions through an effective legal operational framework.

(v)   International Partnerships and Cooperation
•   Continue to rigorously implement and contribute to the development of international standards on combatting money laundering/TF/Proliferation Financing set by the Financial Action Task Force and relevant United Nations Security Council Resolutions, via Singapore’s participation in the relevant platforms.
•   Increase efforts to provide and seek legal assistance from other jurisdictions, as well as leverage informal channels of cooperation, to proactively tackle TF flows. 

5.   Singapore remains committed to taking firm and resolute action against TF to keep our country, region, and the world safe from terrorist activities. The full National CFT Strategy is available for download at MAS, MOF and MHA’s websites.

Ministry of Home Affairs 
Ministry of Finance 
Monetary Authority of Singapore

[1] Agencies involved include the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), Ministry of Finance (MOF), Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC), Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (MUIS), Ministry of Law (MinLaw), and the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF).