Joseph Torbey speaks during a press conference in Beirut, Friday, May 26, 2017. (The Daily Star/Ahmad Azakir)
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A leading banker Tuesday expressed concern about the reluctance of American banks to deal with Arab lenders despite the fact that the latter have complied with all international standards to combat money laundering and terrorism funding.Lebanese and Arab banks invested hundreds of millions of dollars to develop their compliance departments to meet all the standards set by the U.S. and European financial authorities to combat money laundering and terrorism financing.But despite these stringent and robust measures, many Arab banks complain that the relations with correspondent banks in New York are still below expectations.Bankers noted that most small- and medium-size Arab banks are unable to transfer funds or conduct proper financial transactions with American correspondent banks.
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