MENA Regulatory Summit to discuss key issues faced by financial institutions

DUBAI, The 11th MENA (Middle East and North Africa) Regulatory Summit, to be held in Dubai on 5th and 6th February, will discuss key challenges that financial institutions and corporates in the MENA region face in complying with international standards, fighting financial crimes and promoting strong and positive cultures.

Thomson Reuters, one of the leading news and information agencies catering to professional markets, and Dubai Financial Services Authority, DFSA, will co-host the summit under the patronage of the UAE Minister of Economy Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri.

According to Thomson Reuters MENA Financial Report 2016, about 50 percent of compliance respondents have significantly increased their compliance spending over the past two years and 52 percent expect a significant increase in compliance spending in the next two years. More than 39 percent prioritise business change and reorganisation investment over technology and training. Only seven percent have complete confidence in their compliance policies, while 44 percent fear over-reliance on technology.

Around 14 percent of respondents are confident that technology is appropriately applied, while two-thirds do not have a cybersecurity or technology policy in place. More than 40 percent of respondents have confirmed that they do not have a sanctions policy in place.

“Cyber risk, cybercrime and cyberattacks have all come to the fore this year and will continue to be among the key themes next year, especially with global names hitting the headlines for being successfully targeted. The issue is being taken seriously at the highest international levels, with the formation of intelligence-sharing hubs,” said Nadim Najjar, Managing Director, MENA, Thomson Reuters.

“The MENA Regulatory Summit has been the region’s landmark forum for the financial compliance community in the past few years. The two-day programme will explore key themes such as emerging regulatory trends, MENA capital markets regulation, corruption and anti-money laundering, information security, future-risk scenario planning and many other topics,” he added.

“The DFSA is pleased to partner with Thomson Reuters in hosting the 11th MENA Regulatory Summit. In line with its commitment to international standards, the DFSA hopes that this summit will be an appropriate platform to facilitate discussions between public and private sector entities and thought leaders to help shape the solutions to these key challenges and uphold confidence in financial markets while protecting the users of financial services industry. We are eager to take part in a forum that will provide an open exchange of ideas and sharing of best practices to understand potential solutions to key challenges faced by the financial services industry,” said Ian Johnston, Chief Executive of DFSA.

The summit will highlight recent macroeconomic developments in the MENA region, including the US presidential election, Brexit aftermath, regional regulatory responses to financial crises, digital revolution in financial services, blockchain technology and crowdfunding.

The opening day will highlight international anti-financial crime trends, the Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering, FATF, perspective on terrorist financing and emergent types of financial crimes, and the dangers of withdrawal of correspondent banking relationships. Panelists will also discuss trade-based money laundering and trade finance activities, compliance culture, business conduct, business ethics, compliance conflict.

Source: Emirates News Agency