AML/CFT COMPLIANCE A KEY FOCUS OF RECENT SUPERVISORY INSPECTIONS BY THE HONG KONG INSURANCE AUTHORITY

Late last week, the Hong Kong Insurance Authority (IA) published a circular setting out its key findings from anti-money laundering and counter-financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) onsite inspections of authorised insurers carrying on long term business.

The IA conducted visits of more than 20 insurers to review their AML/CFT policies, procedures and controls and their compliance with the relevant legislative and regulatory requirements. Continue reading

PRA adopts questionable approach to regulatory compliance

Recent comments made by Sam Woods, CEO of the PRA, about the PRA’s approach to supervision are worrying.  A speech prepared for this year’s Building Societies Annual Conference (but not actually delivered) is relevant to all authorised firms, not just building societies.  Parts of the speech, which relate to Solvency II rules on contract boundaries, are specifically directed at insurers.

In summary:

  • The PRA argues that is not enough for firms to meet the requirements of the regulatory regime; they must also comply with the “spirit” of the rules.
  • The PRA will form its own judgement about what this means for firms, despite the UK’s obligations under EU law.
  • Mr Woods’ failure to acknowledge EU constraints on the content of the applicable rules, and therefore the PRA’s use of its supervisory powers, appears to confirm that the PRA is willing to “gold-plate” EU legislation despite saying on many occasions that it would not.

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