Vatican City State receives elevated Standard Ethics Rating
October 29, 2013: The Brussels-based Standard Ethics agency moved the Vatican to an “EE” rating. The agency had previously ranked the Vatican as “EE-“—but had noted in July that recent financial reforms had given a “positive outlook” for the Vatican rating. The Standard Ethics Rating is a benchmarking tool on sustainability, social responsibility, governance and environment.
Standard Ethics announced that the Vatican has significantly reduced the openings for illegal financial transactions that could allow for money-laundering or the financing of illegal activities including terrorism. The agency applauded the new Vatican legislation toughening rules on financial disclosure and the first public report by the Vatican bank, the Institute for Religious Works.
The new rating is a boost for Vatican officials, who have been stung by criticism of the Vatican's financial standards, and an indication that reforms begun under Pope Benedict XVI and accelerated under Pope Francis are having a positive effect