|JM, "I am not a crook." by COSIMO.|
Someone asked me recently, what's the most popular article about Malta on this blog. The answer is an older article, from 2020, but one which is accessed on a daily basis. it is entitled OFAC Sanction of Eighteen Iranian banks will have Serious Impact on Malta . That is because Malta's financial community is employed, in a wide variety of ways, by the Islamic Republic of Iran, notwithstanding American, European Union, and international sanctions.
The article represents the only media exposure of this sordid fact, that financial institutions in Malta, as well as the non-bank financial institutions, and financial services providers associated with the domestic financial structure, are all profiting from their covert association with Iranian sanctions evasion.
Additionally, and most concerning, Iran's global facilitation of terrorism and terrorist organizations whose mission is to destroy the Western democracies, including the members of the European Union, covertly funnel money into, and through Malta's banks, and their affiliates. Foreign intelligence agencies take a dim view of any aspect of terrorist financing, and these actions directly affect Malta's ability to remain in good standing with the world's regulatory authorities, such as America's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), which could through its sanctions programme, destroy Malta's ability to process international payments through the United States.
We recognize that the underlying basis for this illicit, and dangerous, activity, is pure greed, but Malta could eventually find that those financial institutions that engage in supporting Iran might awaken one day to sanctions that would serve as a death penalty, which inevitably occurs when major sanctions are imposed.