Visiting Indian President Signs Anti-Money Laundering Deal With Cyprus

India President Ram Nath Kovind, left, and Cyprus' President Nicos Anastasiades meet at the presidential palace in capital Nicosia, Cyprus, Monday, Sept. 3, 2018. (AP Photo/Philippos Christou)

With Cyprus still fighting a reputation for being a tax evasion haven, India’s President Ram Nath Kovind signed an agreement to combat money laundering in joint co-operation in a meeting with President Nicos Anastasiades.

With India’s economy now the fastest growing in the world at 8.28 percent last quarter, and the country the world’s largest democracy, there are growing calls for cross-country coordination to keep terrorists and criminals from laundering illicit gains.

“In this context and given Cyprus’ niche expertise in financial services and investment banking, both of us agreed that there was much scope to deepen our investment partnership,” Kovind said in a statement, the Cyprus Mail reported.

“We welcomed the signing of the MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) between Financial Intelligence Unit, India, and Unit for Combating Money Laundering of Cyprus,” he said.

“This agreement would further strengthen the institutional framework to facilitate investment cross-flows. We also emphasised that the revision in the Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement made in 2016 provided greater opportunities for our investment partnership to grow,” Kovind said.

External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said in a tweet: “India and Cyprus signed two MoUs combating money laundering and cooperation in the field of environment in the presence of Presidents of both countries.”