Cooperate with probe, says Ling-Stuckey

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TREASURER Ian Ling-Stuckey has urged all parties to cooperate with the investigation and the regulatory measures determined by the Financial Analysis and Supervision Unit (Fasu).
He was commenting on the regulatory action taken recently by Fasu, an operationally independent body of the Bank of PNG, concerning anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing (AML/CTF) allegations made against Bank South Pacific Financial Group Ltd (BSP).
“It is crucial for our international credibility as a country, attempting to promote foreign investment, that we are seen worldwide to have a regulatory regime that takes seriously any possible non-compliance of our laws and our international agreements,” Ling-Stuckey said.
“I am pleased by the measured and detailed statement set out by Fasu and look forward to the regulatory process proceeding without interference.”
He said as the Treasurer, he supported “a fair, open and transparent process”.
“All countries around the world face issues ensuring regulatory compliance and adherence to AML/KYC requirements,” he said.
“What determines our standing as a modern economy is how we respond, and the actions we take to address these issues going forward.”
He was working to ensure “a more modern monetary and financial system, with proactive regulation of the financial sector”.
“There is also an ongoing review of the Central Bank Act to help achieve this,” he said.
He said the Government recognised that BSP “has a substantial presence in the banking sector”.
“The Government is, therefore, concerned about the wider impact on livelihoods.
“And as a significant shareholder, I will liaise with the relevant ministries with oversight over BSP, as well as seek to provide advice from Treasury to the Cabinet on any interventions, if appropriate, including representation on the board.”
BSP group chairman Sir Kostas Constantinou said earlier the bank had always complied with its AML/CTF obligations.