Vatican, US Treasury ink agreement to exchange financial info to fight money laundering

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The Vatican has signed an agreement with the U.S. Treasury Department to exchange financial information as part of its efforts to comply with international anti-money laundering and anti-terror financing norms.

It's the fourth such agreement inked by the Holy See as it seeks to improve its reputation in global financial circles following a series of scandals at its bank and a money laundering investigation launched by Rome prosecutors.

The agreement was signed Tuesday in Washington by Rene Bruelhart of the Vatican's financial watchdog agency and Jennifer Shasky Calvery of Treasury's financial crimes enforcement network.

The Council of Europe's Moneyval committee, which is evaluating the Vatican's financial transparency, noted that the Vatican was limited in its ability to share information by its requirement to have such bilateral agreements in place.