Financial Information Authority (Vatican City)

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The Financial Information Authority (Italian: Autorità di Informazione Finanziaria, or AIF) is an institution connected to the Holy See and a canonical and Vatican civil juridic person[1] established by Pope Benedict XVI on 30 December 2010.[2] Its current President ad interim is Bishop Giorgio Corbellini.

The agency, by mandate of an Apostolic Letter, is charged with monitoring the monetary and commercial activities of Vatican agencies, such as the Governorate of Vatican City State, the Vatican Bank, the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See, the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, and smaller agencies such as the Vatican Pharmacy, the Vatican Supermarket, and the Vatican Museums.

The Director of the authority since 7 November 2012 is René Brülhart, a Swiss national, who served as Vice-Chair of the Egmont group from 2010 to 2012 and headed Liechtenstein's financial intelligence unit from 2004 to 2012.[3] On 5 June 2014, Pope Francis appointed Dr. Tommaso di Ruzza as the authority's interim Deputy Director and also completely replaced the members of the authority's Board. As of 5 June 2014, the Board members are: Dr. Bianca Maria Farina, managing director of the Italian insurance company Poste Vita; Dr. Marc Odendall, a financial consultant for the philanthropic sector in Switzerland; Joseph Yuvaraj Pillay, Chairman of the Board of Consultors to the President of the Republic of Singapore; and Dr. Juan Zarate, senior adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C.. [4]

Although the authority can not be described to function as a normal central bank for the Vatican City, partly due to the fact that Vatican City does not have its own sovereign currency but adopted the euro through a monetary agreement with the EU, it still shares at least two of the tasks normally carried out by a central bank, namely the supervision of financial transactions to prevent money laundering and supervision of circulation of money in the state.[5][6]

In 2013 the AIF became a full member of Egmont Group, an international network of Financial Intelligence Units.[7]

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