Burundi is not on the FATF List of Countries that have been identified as having strategic AML deficiencies
Compliance with FATF Recommendations
Burundi has not yet undertaken a Mutual Evaluation Report relating to the implementation of anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing standards.
US Department of State Money Laundering assessment (INCSR)
Burundi was deemed a ‘Monitored’ Jurisdiction by the US Department of State 2016 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report (INCSR). Key Findings from the report are as follows: -
Burundi is not considered a significant center for money laundering or terrorist financing. Although the Government of Burundi enacted AML/CFT legislation and became a party to relevant conventions, it has yet to commit funding, provide training, implement policies, or demonstrate the political will to counter money laundering in practice. Corruption is well- established among the political and financial elite, and corrupt Burundian politicians are adept at devising methods of laundering stolen Burundian assets both in-country and abroad, enjoying near impunity.
Approximately two-thirds of the people of Burundi live on approximately $190 per year. Overseas remittances from the Burundi diaspora are vital to the economy and well-being of the people, contributing as much as 22 percent of the country’s total GDP. It is estimated only 7 percent of the population has access to traditional bank accounts. Burundians are increasingly able to receive remittances digitally via a mobile wallet linked to their mobile phone.
Executive Order 13712, issued on November 22, 2015, imposes a travel ban and freezes any assets held in the United States of Burundi’s Minister of Public Security Alain Guillaume Bunyoni, former Defense Minister Cyrille Ndayirukiye, Major General and former chief of Burundi Intelligence Service Godefroid Niyombare, and Deputy Director-General of the National Police Godefroid Bizimana for human rights violations, inciting violence, and undermining the democratic processes and institutions in Burundi.
On October 1, 2015, the EU imposed similar travel bans and freeze orders against Mr. Bizimana; Gervais Ndirakobuca, Head of Cabinet of the Presidential Administration; Mathias/Joseph Niyonzima, officer of the National Intelligence Service; and former army general Leonard Ngendakumana.
On 1 October 2015, the EU Council adopted Decision (CFSP) 2015/1763 concerning restrictive measures in view of the situation in Burundi providing for travel restrictions and the freezing of funds and economic resources of certain persons, entities or bodies responsible for undermining democracy or obstructing the search for a political solution in Burundi, including by acts of violence, repression or inciting violence, persons, entities or bodies involved in planning, directing, or committing acts that violate international human rights law or international humanitarian law, as applicable, or that constitute serious human rights abuses, in Burundi.
BRIBERY & CORRUPTION
Rating (100-Good / 0-Bad)
Transparency International Corruption Index 17
World Governance Indicator – Control of Corruption 9
Burundi is a landlocked, resource-poor country with an underdeveloped manufacturing sector. Agriculture accounts for over 40% of GDP and employs more than 90% of the population. Burundi's primary exports are coffee and tea, which account for 90% of foreign exchange earnings. Thus, Burundi's export earnings - and its ability to pay for imports - rest primarily on weather conditions and international coffee and tea prices, although exports are a relatively small share of GDP. Burundi is heavily dependent on aid from bilateral and multilateral donors. Foreign aid in 2014 represented 42% of Burundi's national income, the second highest rate in Sub-Saharan Africa. Burundi joined the East African Community (EAC) in 2009.
An ethnic war that ended in 2005 resulted in more than 200,000 deaths, forced more than 48,000 refugees into Tanzania, and displaced 140,000 others internally. Political stability, aid flows, and economic activity improved following the end of the civil war, but underlying weaknesses - a high poverty rate, poor education rates, a weak legal system, a poor transportation network, overburdened utilities, and low administrative capacity – have prevented the government from implementing planned economic reforms. Government corruption has also hindered the development of a private sector as companies have to deal with ever changing rules. The purchasing power of most Burundians has decreased as wage increases have not kept pace with inflation.
In 2015, Burundi’s economy suffered from political turmoil over President NKURUNZIZA’s controversial third term. Blocked transportation routes disrupted the flow of agricultural goods. And donors withdrew aid, increasing Burundi’s budget deficit. When the unrest ends, regional infrastructure improvements driven by the EAC and funded by the World Bank may help improve Burundi’s transport connections and lower transportation costs.
Agriculture - products:
coffee, cotton, tea, corn, sorghum, sweet potatoes, bananas, cassava (manioc, tapioca); beef, milk, hides
light consumer goods (blankets, shoes, soap, beer); assembly of imported components; public works construction; food processing
Exports - commodities:
coffee, tea, sugar, cotton, hides
Exports - partners:
Germany 12.3%, Pakistan 10.7%, Democratic Republic of the Congo 10.7%, Uganda 8.1%, Sweden 7.8%, US 7.1%, Belgium 6.3%, Rwanda 4.6%, France 4.4% (2015)
Imports - commodities:
capital goods, petroleum products, foodstuffs
Imports - partners:
Kenya 15%, Saudi Arabia 14%, Belgium 9.9%, Tanzania 8.3%, Uganda 7.3%, China 7.1%, India 4.9%, France 4% (2015)
Other Useful Links