Response to The Australian Financial Review
27 September 2006
The Australian Financial Review today reported that the "Commonwealth Bank was caught in terrorism funding alert".
The headline is grossly misleading. The Commonwealth Bank has never had any association with the funding of terrorists.
The article itself clearly states that the group concerned is not on any United Nations list of organisations with links to terrorism. The expert quoted in the article also states "This is a legal organisation."
The Commonwealth Bank provided the following statement to the journalist which clearly indicates the Bank’s position regarding co-operating with Governments on Anti-terrorist and Anti Money Laundering legislations prior to the article being published.
"The Bank follows its strong obligation on customer confidentiality everywhere that it operates, including Indonesia and for that reason is not able to comment on specific customers.
The Bank is aware of its obligations on Anti Money Laundering and fully meets those obligations, including checking listed names and not providing banking services to organisations named by Governments as terrorist related organisations.
There are strong AML regulations in Indonesia and also know your customer, know your client obligations. The Bank complies with these requirements.
As part of AML legislation, the Bank has a duty to report any suspicious accounts or transactions and it also complies with these laws."