Broad Street, Lagos
The West African Institute for Financial and Economic Management (WAIFEM) has revealed that only ‘risk-focused banking supervision’ can effectively curb banks’ failures and ensure their financial stability in the region.
Declaring a capacity building course for bank supervisors in the region open in Lagos, WAIFEM’s Director General, Prof Akpan Ekpo, represented by the Director of Administration and Finance, Euracklyn Williams, noted that the course in particular would provide participants with an in-depth knowledge of the techniques of supervision, banking licensing and preventive measures needed to avoid bank failures.
He observed that in recent years, the international banking scene had witnessed strong trends towards globalisation and consolidation of the financial system.
He noted however that globalisation and liberalisation had added other dimensions to the challenges of regulation and supervision of the banking system and a relatively new tool to deal effectively with the emerging challenges is risk-focused banking supervision.
Ekpo pointed out that the stability of the financial system had become a major challenge to bank regulators and supervisors worldwide. He added that the multilateral initiative leading to evolution of international supervisory standards and codes as well as evaluation of adherence, represent resolute attempts to address this challenge.
“In this sub-region, the supervisory process has concomitantly evolved and is aiming at attaining a certain level of robustness and sophistication consistent with international best practice,” he said.
“Risk-focused banking supervision is a process for optimising the synergy from the different activities, including regulatory and supervisory functions that enhance the overall efficiency and effectiveness of the supervisory process. Entailing the development and maintenance of a dynamic and supervisory plan that responds to the organisation’s changing risk profile,” he said.
According to him, the course is designed to upgrade the capacity of staff in banking supervision at the intermediate level. And the themes to be covered included, an overview of banking supervision; Supervisory standards: Basel core principles; Risk management process and consolidated supervision.
He also added that the scope of the course would cover the causes, prevention and resolution of bank failures; corporate governance principles; bank licensing process; bank accounting (interpretation of financial statements) and prompt corrective action framework.
He wished the participants drawn from the apex banks and bank deposit insurers of Nigeria, Ghana, Guinea, Gambia, Liberia and Sierra-Leone an enriching experience through the presentations of technical papers by the array of experts.
“I urge you to maximise this opportunity and come up with implementable recommendations to address the issues and challenges facing banking supervision and monetary policy management in the West-African sub region,” he said.
He disclosed that to ensure that all their programmes had a competitive edge, the institute had established a collaborative technical partnership with world class institutions involved in capacity building for economic and financial management.
“These include, International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank, African Development Bank (ADB), Bank of England, Commonwealth Secretariat, World Trade Organisation (WTO), Debt Relief International and United Nations Economic Commission for Africa among others,” he said.
Ekpo remarked that with the synergy leveraged from these partners, WAIFEM is now acknowledged as the centre of excellence in capacity building for economic management in West Africa.