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Impact of Trade and Political Linkages on the EU Money Laundering and Terrorist Finance Blacklist

Student: Riley walter Nagy

Supervisor: Maxim Bratersky

Faculty: Faculty of Social Sciences

Educational Programme: Politics. Economics. Philosophy (Master)

Final Grade: 10

Year of Graduation: 2021

This research is an analysis of the European Union's list on high risk third countries for money laundering and terrorist finance, and analyzes the failure of the European Union to successfully implement its own methodology. This paper examines how political ties may have had an impacting role in this failure, and examines these ties through trade relations and case by case analysis. The research consists of a three-step analysis, first starting with a qualitative analysis of the EU's methodology, then a quantitative analysis of the linkage between trade and the likelihood that a country appears on the EU's list, and finally a case by case analysis of countries that show discrepancies. This research finds that the EU has failed to successfully implement its own analysis of third countries, and that it has regressed back to a cautious approach that more closely follows the FATF's own listing, with some exceptions. This research also finds that the EU was subjected to political pressures by the United States and Saudi Arabia which may have played a role in the abandonment of their independent assessment, and the failure of the European Union's own analysis, but also finds evidence that the European Union's analysis may have failed due to poor execution.

Full text (added May 13, 2021)

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