In September 2022, the IIJ returned to Abidjan for the second workshop on Mitigating Risks Associated with Abuse of Designated Non-Financial Businesses and Professions (DNFBPs) for Terrorist Financing Purposes in West Africa, a follow-up to its highly successful first event in October 2021. With generous support of the Government of Germany, more than 50 practitioners from the host country Cote d’Ivoire, as well as Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, and Togo – most of whom participated in the first workshop – held spirited discussions on how to prevent, identify and disrupt terrorist groups in the region that use the DNFBP sector to finance their operations.
The 3-day workshop, which included private sector participants for the first time, featured interactive presentations on international standards and best practices in the area of countering terrorist financing, exchanges on national regulations and practices, group work on hypothetical exercises based on real-life scenarios and discussions of recent terrorist financing cases involving the DNFBP sector from the region.
Participants were highly engaged and reported how this workshop was relevant to their daily work. Mr Idrissa Ouattara, representative of the Inter-Governmental Action Group Against Money Laundering in West Africa (GIABA) remarked that, “the exchanges between subject matter experts and practitioners helped us gain solid knowledge of the legislative environment and potential partnerships between the entities present”. Ms Sadia Yolande, a lawyer of the Ivorian Committee for Coordination of the Fight against Money Laundering, Financing of Terrorism and the Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction, reported that “such events enable us to explore what is happening in the region and in our neighbouring countries. We can learn from each other and build a professional network based on exchanging ideas and sharing experiences”.
The IIJ is committed to continuing the important partnerships it has forged and the progress it has supported during these two workshops by developing and delivering targeted training on countering terrorist financing, on both the national and sub-regional level, involving financial intelligence units and representatives of the DNFBP sector in West Africa.
For more information on this workshop, please contact the IIJ at email@example.com.