The FINANCIAL -- The EBRD’s Trade Facilitation Programme (TFP) is transforming the technical assistance model by attracting scholarships from and strengthening ties with the International Compliance Association (ICA) through a unique collaboration between an IFI and the largest professional association of compliance specialists.
As a part of the cooperation, Kamola Makhmudova, Senior Banker at the EBRD, has joined the Technical Board of the ICA, bringing the unique experience of the EBRD‘s successful capacity building projects. The EBRD and the ICA will work closely to support the professional development of practitioners in the EBRD’s regions, addressing modern challenges and shaping the future of compliance.
Further, this collaboration is backed by the launch of a new training programme in trade–based compliance issues, completion of which will be the award of internationally- recognised qualifications issued by the ICA. The training programme will be offered to 120 partner banks, according to EBRD.
An international member survey by the Banking Commission of the International Chambers of Commerce in 2015 identified a number of widespread difficulties posed by different legal and regulatory requirements, which multiply both the cost and complexity of compliance issues and create barriers to trade finance. Seventy per cent of the participating banks reported that they had declined trade finance transactions due to confusion over the ‘Know your customer’ and trade-based money laundering regulations, with 46 per cent of respondents reporting they had terminated correspondent relationships due to related costs and complexities. In addition, 91 per cent of the respondents expected their compliance requirements to increase over the next year and 53 per cent considered the lack of compliance harmonisation between jurisdictions a great challenge to the trade finance industry.
To address these challenges, the ICA and the EBRD for the first time will be jointly funding scholarships for two qualifications that will be offered to EBRD partner banks: the ICA Certificate in Know Your Customer (KYC)/Customer Due Diligence (CDD) and the ICA Specialist Certificate in Trade-Based Money Laundering (TBML). These courses will also be offered to central banks in selected countries where the EBRD invests.
Following successful completion of the assessments, candidates will attend an official ICA qualification award ceremony hosted by the EBRD. Successful candidates will also receive a one-year exclusive membership with the ICA, which includes, among other things, access to the Continuous Professional Development Centre, a wide range of regional and global networking events, publications, videos, a library of online resources, InCompliance magazine and a monthly newsletter.
The new qualifications are designed to achieve educational excellence in the areas of KYC/CDD and TBML. Candidates will benefit from blended learning that includes online training, a practical workshop with an expert tutor and online assessment. This training has been tailored for the specific needs of the target audience operating within EBRD’s partner banks.
The collaboration between the two institutions will make it possible for EBRD partner banks to train their staff to the standards of leading international banks, minimise the costs of compliance and continue to stimulate trade finance transactions in the EBRD’s region. These qualifications will be another step closer to removing trade barriers and facilitating trade between EBRD countries of operations, helping them establish correspondent connections with wider networks around the world.
Launched in 1999, the EBRD’s Trade Facilitation Programme aims to promote foreign trade to, from and among the countries in which the EBRD invests. Through the programme, the EBRD provides guarantees to international confirming banks and short-term loans to selected banks and factoring companies for on-lending to local exporters, importers and distributors. The TFP currently includes 94 partner banks in 26 countries, with limits exceeding €1.5 billion in total and more than 800 confirming banks worldwide.
The ICA is a global professional membership and awarding body dedicated to the pursuit of excellence in anti-money laundering, legal and regulatory compliance, financial crime prevention and the management of regulatory risk through certificated qualifications and knowledge transfer. Working within a variety of sectors, the ICA helps individuals, firms, regulatory and government institutions, across a range of geographical jurisdictions and industry sectors to develop best practice in the management of risk.