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Changes now!

Marlon Madden

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Insurance companies are being told that now is the time to make necessary regulatory changes to stay abreast of the industry’s changing face, if they have not done so already.
This warning has come from Randy Graham, president of the Insurance Institute of Barbados Inc., who said the insurance industry across the Caribbean has been constantly changing and Barbados should not be left out.
Graham said the Financial Services Commission (FSC) should not be seen as an adversarial body since it was put in place “to protect consumers and to ensure the industry operates in the best practices where there is opportunity for growth and development”.
Noting that there have been a number of local and international reviews of the regulatory framework in Barbados, Graham said there were three areas where they had “some challenges in terms of a gap”.
Those areas, he said, are the capital adequacy requirements, the solvency requirements, and the requirements at the senior management level and the board of executives of insurance companies. He said he believed that any imminent changes to the FSC Act would be to those areas.
“So there are going to be some changes but those changes should be embraced. What I would briefly recommend to the insurance companies as we go forward with this new regulation is that if you have not already done so, you need to start to identify the person or [people] within your organization – some people call them compliance officers – to become familiar with the FSC Act and also to become familiar with the Barbados Insurance Act cap. 310 and the Anti-Money Laundering [Authority] as well. And have that person in the organization develop a framework for making sure that all regulatory requirements are up to speed or up to date.
“There are things we will have to report periodically. You can have that person develop that framework for reporting so that we are all in line with what needs to be done under the [various] acts,” he suggested.
“So if you want to be proactive and stay on top of regulation, those three areas are areas that you can review internally and benchmark yourself against best practices to see where you are if there are any changes in those areas.
He added: “The FSC is in place. They are fully operational as I understand it. So this is the time to get your house in order if you have not already done so, with respect to regulations. If there are any impending changes, we can keep ahead of the game.”