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These are critical times for the Caribbean Association of Banks as we continue our advocacy on the risk of losing correspondent banking relationships and the factors that heighten this risk, for 2016. It has been a busy time and we are pleased to share some of the events with you in this May 2016 newsletter issue.

For every month of the year, so far, CAB has been invited to present at a significant conference/meeting on Correspondent Banking or AML -  in and beyond the region. In January we were at the CaPRI Roundtable Discussion on Correspondent Banking in Jamaica; February, the CARICOM Meeting of Ministers of Finance on Correspondent Banking in Belize; March, the ComplianceAid AML/CFT Conference in Miami; and April, FATF Private Sector Consultative Forum in Vienna. Not forgetting the CAB's first ever CEO Forum on De-Risking, held in Miami on April 16th.

We hope to see positive results from our contributions and advocacy. In the meantime do enjoy the details and useful information from these events and also our exploration of the cryptocurrency technology which may become important for the region.
What you will find in this Issue:

  1. Correspondent Banking News.
  2. CAB's CEO Forum on De-risking.
  3. Why Latin American Economies are Turning to Bitcoin
  4. Common Reporting Standard (CRS) Frequently Asked Questions
  5. The Credit Skills Academy
  6. CAB/FIBA Training
  7. CAB New Board of Directors  

FATF Private Sector Consultative Forum - 19-20th April 2016, Vienna

The CAB was invited to present at this forum as a contributor to the discussions on Correspondent Banking and was represented by Mrs. Mary Popo, General Manager of the CAB. The main objective of the forum was to have an open dialogue with representatives from a variety of private sector bodies on barriers to information sharing and correspondent banking. The objective of the CAB presentation was to provide a general overview of the De-risking phenomena and its impact on the Caribbean region.

The CAB presentation was very well received. CAB was the only Caribbean representative at this prestigious Forum.The input received during these discussions will contribute to the FATF's ongoing work to develop guidance on correspondent banking and remittances. New guidance is to be issued by June 2016.

The de-risking issue is receiving attention at the highest level. The Chair of the FSB Correspondent Banking Co-ordination Group (who was also in attendance) advised that the G20 is very concerned about the effect of de-risking, especially on remittances, and that the committee has been mandated to provide a comprehensive report on the issue at  the G20 Summit in November 2016.     

In total 107 representatives of 24 FATF member, associate member and observer delegations, and 51 private sector representatives attended the meeting. This included representatives of United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, the Financial Stability Board, the Wolfsberg Group, the US Treasury, Office of the Controller of the Currency (DC), banks, money remitters, credit unions, e-money providers, accountants, lawyers, trust practitioners and the real estate sector. 

Mrs. Mary Popo, General Manager CAB, delivering CAB's presentation at the FATF PS Consultative Forum, Vienna.

See link for the CAB  presentation:  "De-risking and The Caribbean"

CARICOM Meeting of the Committee of Ministers of Finance on Correspondent Banking - 15th February 2016, Placencia, Belize

The CAB attended this meeting of CARICOM’s Committee of Ministers of Finance on the correspondent banking threat, held under the chairmanship of the Hon. Gaston Browne, Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda. The purpose of the meeting was to deliberate on the continuing threat of withdrawal of correspondent banking services from Member States and to make recommendations to Heads of Government at the Twenty-Seventh Inter-Sessional Meeting (16-17 February 2016). The outcome of the meeting was to establish elements of a regional strategy for advancing a regional response to this threat.

The CAB was represented by Ms. Joanna Charles, Chair; Mrs. Mary Popo, General Manager of CAB Secretariat and Mrs. Onika Miller, Executive, Jamaica National Building Society. The Chair raised the CAB's concerns and recommendations, the majority of which (recommendations) were incorporated in the CARICOM Draft Summary of Conclusion. See below for a key presentation from the meeting.

The Caribbean Project on De-Risking" Undertaken by the Committee of Central Bank Governors.  
Presentation by Dr. Allan Wright, Senior Economist – Central Bank of Barbados & Lead of Central Banks Research Team at the CARICOM Meeting of the Committee of Ministers of Finance on Correspondent Banking in Belize, February  2016.  VIEW

Withdrawal from Correspondent Banking; Where, Why and What To Do About It. - November 2015
Finance and Markets Global Practice of the World Bank Group.

"roughly half the banking authorities and slightly more local/regional banks indicated a decline in CBRs.  For large international banks the figures are significantly higher at 75 percent"

For access to the complete World Bank Report click HERE
CAB CEO Forum on De-Risking - 16th April 2016

CAB held a successful meeting of CEO's, Directors and Compliance professionals from member banks on the subject of De-risking, last month. The meeting covered the sharing of member experiences regarding De-risking, a look at what is required to set up a clearing house in the US, several  presentations on alternative payment methods and an address by a UK bank with a potential interest in providing correspondent banking services to financial institutions in the Caribbean. 

The meeting was considered a success by all who attended and resulted in the establishment of a six-member committee to to advance the recommendations of:
  • The establishment of a clearing institution in the US
  • Alternative Payment Methods
  • Alternative Correspondent Banking Relationships (UK)
For Press Release and Forum Report see:


CAB Congratulations go out to...

Mr. Nigel M. Baptiste on his recent appointment as Managing Director and President of Republic Financial Holdings Limited. Mr. Baptiste has been with Republic Bank for twenty-five years and has served as an executive director for the last ten years.

Mr. Courtney Campbell on his recent appointment as President and Chief Executive Officer of Victoria Mutual Building Society.

Ms. Mariame Robinson on her recent appointment as Chief Executive Officer of First Global Bank. .
The CAB wishes each appointee success in their  new roles. 

Best wishes go out also to Mr. David Dulal-Whiteway for his retirement from the positions of Managing Director and President of Republic Financial Holdings Limited, after ten years of effective leadership during a period of significant growth and success.The CAB celebrates Mr. Dulal-Whiteway stellar contribution of over thirty years to the Republic Bank Group and wishes him success in his future endeavors.

Why Latin American Economies Are Turning to Bitcoin
Posted by Sonny Singh, Alberto Vega

The economic prospects for Latin America in 2016 are grim. With political instability in some of the region’s largest economies, as well as a general slump in prices in oil and other commodities, businesses and consumers are facing a depression and, in the case of Venezuela, economic collapse.......

Many Latin Americans are turning to bitcoin as a solution, and the recent crises seem only to have accelerated adoption.

Find out more about the seven applications for bitcoin in Latin America here.

Common Reporting Standards (CRS) Related Frequently Asked Questions


Several Caribbean countries have given their commitment to the adoption of the Common Reporting Standards (CRS).
Some are early adopters, undertaking first exchanges by 2017 e.g. Anguilla, Barbados, Cayman Islands, Curacao, Trinidad and Tobago
Others have undertaken first exchanges by 2018 e.g. Antigua and Barbuda, Belize, Grenada, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia

The Secretariat recently circulated a survey on CRS and we await your response in order to provide you with relevant supporting information to achieve compliance. We urge members who have not yet responded to do so by Friday 15th April 2016.

For your guidance, this November 2015 document provides FAQ's in the areas of:
  1. General Reporting Requirements e.g. Aggregation & Excluded Accounts
  2. Due Diligence Requirements e. g. Residence Address Test - Two Addresses
  3. Definitions - Reporting & Non-Reporting FI's, Financial Account, Reportable Account
  4. Other Issues - Data Safeguards - ISO-27000
See all FAQ's here

 Credit Skills Academy 

Congratulations to the seven successful CSA students who have passed the Foundation Level:

  • Mr. Mario Farinha                    Guyana Bank for Trade & Industry
  • Ms. Nirupa Narine                   Guyana Bank for Trade & Industry
  • Mr. Ryan Bissessar                Guyana Bank for Trade & Industry
  • Mr. Seugobin Sugrim              Guyana Bank for Trade & Industry
  • Mr. Devon Mahabir                  Guyana Bank for Trade & Industry    
  • Mr. Bhesham Persaud            Guyana Bank for Trade & Industry
  • Ms. Namona Persaud             Guyana Bank for Trade & Industry
The CAB recognises the challenges of studying while working full-time and considers this a significant milestone in their professional  development.

Wishing continued success for all, at the Advanced Level.

Link to Credit Skills Academy - Sign Up Now!
In collaboration with FIBA, the CAB is offering four new Compliance/Trade training opportunities to help improve your skills & qualifications in balancing business with compliance :

Curacao     May 25th         - The Compliance Challenge   
                                           Click here to Download Brochure.
                  May 26-27th     - Advising Clients in a Highly Regulated Environment
                                           Click here to Download Brochure.

Trinidad     June 15-16th    - International Trade Finance Certificate
                                           Click here to Download Brochure.

                  June  17th        - Supply Chain Finance Workshop
                                            Click here to Download Brochure.

Don't Miss Out - Register Now!!!

CAB Board of  Directors: 2015-2016

Back Row: L-R: Mrs Carole Eleuthere-Jn Marie – First Citizens Investments Ltd, Mr. Donald Thompson -St Kitts -Nevis-Anguilla-National Bank Ltd, Mr Richard Sammy – Republic Bank (Guyana), Mr. Rolf Phillips - Consolidated Finance Co. Ltd
Front Row: L-R: Mrs Mary Popo – CAB Secretariat, Mr. Mark Anderson - First Global Bank Ltd, Ms. Joanna Charles – ECFH, Chairperson , Mrs Moya L Leiba-Barnes – JMMB Merchant Bank Ltd, Mr. Farid Antar - Republic Bank, Vice Chairperson
Missing: Mrs Enid Bissember – CARICOM
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