The United States Department of Commerce has rescinded its warning dating from June 2000 against doing financial business with Israeli companies and individuals.

The Justice Ministry learned of the policy change in a phone call to ministry director-general Aharon Abramovitch from the Department of Commerce.

A month ago Israel was removed from the blacklist of countries deemed inadequate in their handling of money-laundering by the Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering, leading to the cancellation of the warning.

In June 2000, the Department of Commerce warned American banks and financial institutions about working with the Israeli financial establishment, and demanded that they carefully examine any transactions originating in Israel, or which were routed through Israel.

The grounds for the warning were Israel's inclusion in the FATF blacklist in 2000.

The Department of Commerce even considered rescinding the approval of Israeli banks to act as financial mediators in the United States, but stepped back after the Justice Ministry lobbied hard against such a move.

Canada and Hong Kong published similar warnings. Banks in both countries refused to allow Israelis to open accounts, decisions now rolled back after Israel's removal from the blacklist.