Norway and Germany are working together to fight illicit financial flows (IFFs)

This week, the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) and the Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) signed an agreement aimed to combat illicit financial flows (IFFs) in the Western Balkans.

Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ms. Ine Marie Eriksen Søreide, and the German Federal Minister of Economic Cooperation and Development, Mr. Gerd Müller.

 

Illicit financial flows severely undermine development. The joint three-year initiative will focus on prevention, financial investigation and asset recovery in the Western Balkans. The region is a crossroad between Europe, the Middle East and the Far East, and the transnational aspect of organized crime is especially relevant. Considerable IFFs originate from drugs, arms and human trafficking as much as from widespread corruption, tax evasion and money laundering.

 

Together, we empower our partner institutions in North Macedonia, Albania, Kosovo and Montenegro to fight IFFs by implementing standards against money-laundering and terrorist financing, improving confiscation and recovery of stolen assets and establishing beneficial ownership registries. To address the issue of illegal cash transport we support establishing multi-agency teams and training of cash dogs and dog handlers. We work with a variety of actors including civil society and the media.