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06CASABLANCA851 2006-07-21 14:40:00 UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY Consulate Casablanca
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1. (U) On July 20th, the Ministerial Council presided over
by King Mohammed VI approved Morocco's long-awaited draft
Anti-Money Laundering (AML) legislation. The
royally-approved draft law can now be presented to Parliament
when it convenes in the second week of October. Both the
upper and lower chambers of parliament will have the
opportunity to discuss the draft before voting on it. Within
thirty days of parliamentary passage, the legislation will
then be sent to the Royal Palace to receive the King's final
seal. Only then can the legislation be published in the
official gazette and become law. Given the time required to
complete these next steps, we expect implementation of AML no
earlier than spring 2007.

2. (SBU) Comment: AML passage and implementation remain
the missing pieces in Morocco's counter-terrorism finance
efforts. The draft bill has languished for several years in
inter-ministerial consideration. However, approval of the
bill by the royally convened Council of Ministers is a
significant step forward for this long-awaited piece of
legislation. That said, banking contacts continue to warn of
AML's potential negative impact on Morocco's large informal
sector. Banking contacts tell us that even if AML does enter
into force in early 2007, implementation will be difficult
and we can expect an unspecified "adjustment period" before
the law can be considered fully in effect.
End Comment