The U.S. Treasury Department Thursday will lift economic restrictions against Sudan that have hampered the growth of the Republic of South Sudan's oil sector and the role of banks in the region. The department's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) will publish two general licenses authorizing financial transactions and other activity related to South Sudan's petroleum industry and the transshipment of goods, technology and services when such deals involve Sudanese entities, according to a final rule available Wednesday on the Office of the Federal Register's Web site. The licenses are intended to aid landlocked South Sudan, which gained its independence...
Sources in Sudan and the United States believe American officials may roll back sanctions against the North African country, which has been subject to a comprehensive U.S. trade embargo for nearly 20 years.
For nearly 20 years, U.S. sanctions have stymied Sudan's economic growth while doing little to stop savvy bankers from doing business in the country, according to Bader Eldin Mahmmoud Abbas Mukhtar, the country's minister of finance and national economy.
High-profile sanctions cases are spurring large banks and third-party software vendors to improve how they identify when counterparts and clients secretly act on behalf of blacklisted entities, say compliance experts.
After a busy year for federal sanctions officials, large banks with international footprints are increasingly instituting deeper, standalone audits of their related policies and procedures, say compliance officers and consultants.
The U.S. Treasury Department's sanctions enforcement arm has been increasingly looking at the compliance programs of banks that confuse transactional rejection and blocking orders, an official said Thursday.