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International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
This Technical Note discusses the findings and recommendations made in the Financial Sector Assessment Program for the Russian Federation in the areas of anti–money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism. Some authorities have gained a better understanding of money laundering and terrorism financing risks. Swift finalization of the national risk assessment will further advance that understanding and the use of a risk-based approach by all concerned agencies and reporting entities. Preventive measures related to politically exposed persons and reporting of suspicious transactions were updated and are largely in line with the Financial Action Task Force standards. However, the definition of politically exposed persons must be further amended, and the effectiveness of the measures should be enhanced.
Ms. Victoria J Perry, Ms. Katherine Baer, and Mr. Emil M Sunley
In all of the new countries formed after the dissolution of the Soviet Union, other than the Baltics, the value-added taxes (VATs) adopted were “hybrid” VATs that treat CIS trade differently from trade with the rest of the world. This paper inquires whether this is appropriate. The paper concludes that it would be better if all CIS countries applied the destination principle to CIS trade as well as to trade with the rest of the world. The paper addresses the economic, administrative and revenue allocation considerations underlying this decision.
Michael Kaser

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Mr. Gianni De Nicolo and Ms. Elena Loukoianova
This paper presents a model of a banking industry with heterogeneous banks that delivers predictions on the relationship between banks' risk of failure, market structure, bank ownership, and banks' screening and bankruptcy costs. These predictions are explored empirically using a panel of individual banks data and ownership information including more than 10,000 bank-year observations for 133 non-industrialized countries during the 1993-2004 period. Four main results obtain. First, the positive and significant relationship between bank concentration and bank risk of failure found in Boyd, De Nicolò and Al Jalal (2006) is stronger when bank ownership is taken into account, and it is strongest when state-owned banks have sizeable market shares. Second, conditional on country and firm specific characteristics, the risk profiles of foreign (state-owned) banks are significantly higher than (not significantly different from) those of private domestic banks. Third, private domestic banks do take on more risk as a result of larger market shares of both state-owned and foreign banks. Fourth, the model rationalizes this evidence if both state-owned and foreign banks have either larger screening and/or lower bankruptcy costs than private domestic banks, banks' differences in market shares, screening or bankruptcy costs are not too large, and loan markets are sufficiently segmented across banks of different ownership.
Mr. Gianni De Nicolo and Ms. Elena Loukoianova

income group, CIS, CEEB, and South America regions, while the reverse is true in the total sample as well as the rest of the subgroups. 8 Return on average assets in the total sample is lower for state-owned banks than for foreign and private domestic banks (Tables 3.3), while return on average equity is lower for foreign banks than for state-owned and private domestic banks ( Table 3.4 ). However, private domestic banks have a lower return on average assets than foreign banks in high middle income group, Middle East, and CIS. State-owned banks have higher return on