November 24,2022

European Chapter of the MENA Financial Crime Compliance Group holds Fourth Meeting

On November 9th, 2022 Founding Members of the MENA Financial Crime Compliance Group Europe Chapter met at Bank ABC in London. The meeting welcomed Thomas Noone, Head of Regulatory Compliance & MLRO Europe Arab Bank plc, as new Chair to the Chapter. The meeting reviewed recent activities including the go live of the Europe Chapter dedicated website.

MENA FCCG Advisor Rasha Mortada, Group Chief Compliance Officer, Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, also joined the meeting where she provided a brief on the MENA FCCG Plenary meeting that was conducted in Sharm Al-Sheikh in September 2022.

The meeting also discussed the Chapter’s recent meeting with the FCA and key pain points communicated earlier by the latter including PEPs and Trade Finance as well as the need to foster distinct Three Lines of Defence /Accountability particularly within smaller banks. In this regard, members discussed key expectations of the FCA including the delineation of responsibilities, allocation of financial crime resources, enhanced compliance monitoring processes, and tailored training specific to the activities of the bank while focusing on Board and Senior Managment awareness. In that regard, members agreed on developing a best practice framework that would tackle the compliance aspects raised by the FCA.

Other topics discussed by the members included compliance with evolving sanctions including as it relates to sanctions imposed against Russia as well as the raising of the bar on banks’ role to promote ESG practices.

Members agreed to hold a Financial Crime Forum for Arab banks operating in early 2023. The forum, scheduled to take place in London, will aim to address key pain points facing Arab banks operating in Europe in order for the Chapter to steer its efforts accordingly. Members concluded the meeting with agreeing on holding the next Plenary Meeting in February to be hosted by Bank of London and the Middle East (BLME).

Meeting Meeting