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Expert Calls For Single Caribbean Banking Regulator

by Amanda Banks, Tax-News.com, London

23 January 2006


A regional banking expert has proposed the establishment of a regulatory banking body for the Caribbean, to oversee standards in an industry that is expected to grow substantially with the coming of the Caricom Single Market Economy, according to a report from the Jamaica Information Service.

Faye Jacobs, the Executive Director of the consultancy firm Caribbean Integrated Financial Services Limited (CIFS), believes that the creation of such an institution would be of benefit by separating banking regulation in the region from financial services regulation.

According to Ms Jacobs, whose consultancy has been responsible for the training of personnel in banking institutions across the region, rapid expansion of commercial banks will mean that the banking sector will see a commensurate increase in its lending portfolio, creating a need for closer monitoring of non-performing loans.

"At this time, proper monitoring is critical and this is one main reason why a regional regulatory body is needed," Ms Jacobs, a recognised expert in credit risk management, rehabilitation and the management of non-performing loan portfolios, was quoted by JIS as stating.

Nonetheless, Ms Jacobs foresees a bright future for the banking industry in the Caribbean, which, she observed, has managed strong growth despite the region's limitations.

"As it is, the region's banking sector has survived and has shown profitability, despite the lack of economies of scale from which its counterpart in the developed world benefit. This means that we have the potential to be as good as any other player in the market," she noted.

TAGS: Curaçao

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