Basseterre, St. Kitts — The Banking Bill, 2015 is the first piece of legislation passed in the National Assembly under the Team Unity administration headed by Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Dr. the Hon. Timothy Harris, on July 29, 2015.
The new Banking Act provides for the regulation of banking business, the establishment of a single banking space in the ECCU and the repeal and replacement of the Banking Act, Cap. 21.01. It also attempts to: correct deficiencies in the previous Act; address major issues that emerged in the banking sector of the OECS following the 2008 global financial crisis and the ensuing recession; make our legislation compatible with international standards in order to preempt future crises; enable the authorities to resolve failed banks more efficiently and effectively; protect depositors and; maintain financial stability in the ECCU.
In a recent public address ECCB Governor Sir K. Dwight Venner said, “The fall of CLICO and BAICO, two major regional financial institutions, has had a marked effect on our countries and is still in the process of resolution, even though significant progress has been made. The ECCB has had to intervene in several domestic banks which had become insolvent. The international financial community led by the Bretton Woods institutions, the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank and the Bank for International Settlements, from which the central banking community seeks guidance on these matters, established special committees such as the Financial Stability Board to examine and approve new guidelines for the regulation of banks and other financial institutions.”