De-Risking Challenges Discussed At Special Hearing

Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley speaking during the full sitting of the United States’ House of Committees’ hybrid hearing in Washington DC, Wednesday. (PMO) Prime Minister Mia
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(Barbados Government Information Service Press Release) Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley has informed a specially convened panel on de-risking that the blacklisting by some financial regulators has resulted in a loss of more than 30 per cent of correspondent banking relationships in the Caribbean.

The Prime Minister insisted that the listing process, whether through the Financial Action Task Force or the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, meant that they have “made a judgement that we are simply too small as I’ve just told you, in order to get involved because the enhanced due diligence means increased costs of regulation and increased cost of compliance. And rather than do business with us, they say thank you, but no, thank you”.

Ms. Mottley was giving testimony (Wednesday) during the full sitting of the United States’ House of Committees’ hybrid hearing entitled: When Banks Leave: The Impacts of De-Risking on the Caribbean and Strategies for Ensuring Financial Access in Washington.   

The session was chaired by Chairman of the United States Financial Services Committee, Congresswoman Maxine Waters, and is a follow-up to a meeting held with CARICOM and some members of the Financial Services Committee convened here in April.  

The Prime Minister contended that other organisations have used alternative mechanisms as their benchmark that have created a situation where “the very thing that you set out to achieve, which is the avoidance of terrorism financing and the avoidance of money laundering on which we are all agreed, is likely to happen because you’re driving people underground”.

“There is no benefit in driving our citizens underground, or making our countries uncompetitive such that our economies are at risk of becoming underdeveloped or failed states. And we have now to determine whether this is capable of being a continued acceptable course of action. We have been making noise for nearly a decade. And we want to thank this committee for hearing us today, because that noise cannot continue,” she stressed.

Read more at: Barbados Government Information Service

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