The Caribbean Association of Banks (CAB) Inc. was on Thursday, July 23rd, 2020 offered the opportunity to engage in dialogue with the United Nations High-Level Panel on International Financial Accountability, Transparency and Integrity for Achieving the 2030 Agenda (UN FACTI Panel). Led by chairperson Dalton Lee, the recognised voice for the Caribbean banking and financial services sector addressed panellists on the issues and challenges affecting the industry in the region.
The 75-minute informal briefing was the latest in the ongoing series of virtual meetings UN FACTI has held with stakeholders across the world since it was impanelled in March 2020. The Panel is mandated to explore further actions that may be needed by the international community in a number of areas to ensure effective implementation of the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on Financing for Development. The Panel includes 17 high-level people from policy making, academia, civil society and the private sector.
From the UN FACTI end, Thursday’s conversation was led by panellists Susan Rose-Ackerman, of the FACTI Panel anti-corruption cluster; Dr Magdalena Sepúlveda Carmona, FACTI Panel tax cluster; and Irene Ovonji-Odida, FACTI Panel international cooperation. Dr Namonma Soeknandan, Deputy Secretary-General of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), and a member of the FACTI Panel, managed the process of pulling together the consultation with Caribbean banking professionals.
Speaking from the CAB perspective were Directors Rolf Phillips; Brian Woo; Johnathan Johannes; and Chief Executive Officer, Wendy Delmar. They addressed a number of pertinent areas, including the flawed perception of the Caribbean as a tax haven; de-risking and loss of Caribbean banking relationships; anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism; changing international rules and regulations; cybersecurity; and the emergence of financial technology.
Additional questions were posed by panellists Annet Wanyana Oguttu and Shahid Hafiz Kardar.
The interaction with CAB will feed into an interim report of findings to be presented by UN FACTI in September 2020 and the Panel’s final report expected in February 2021.