The Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM) has said the growing pan-Africanism—continental integration—has brought new challenges to bank supervision.
This is according to the RBM Governor Charles Chuka when he officially opened the Intermediate Banking Supervision Workshop at Ryalls Hotel in Blantyre on Monday.
According to a speech provided by the central bank, the governor said the growing role of pan-African banks means that financial systems are getting interlinked at a pace that creates special challenges to bank supervisors.
“Capacity challenges have become acute over the past 10 years and central banks have found it hard to retain supervisory skills against the back drop of competitive remuneration packages in the private sector. As a result, serious skills gaps have emerged in banking supervision,” said Chuka.
Chuka, therefore, applauded the Macroeconomic and Financial Management Institute of Eastern and Southern Africa (Mefmi), organisers of the workshop, noting that it will contribute to capacity building in bank supervision at regional level.
Currently, Malawihas 11 commercial banks including three pan-African: Standard Bank, Nedbank and Ecobank while some of the locally registered banks have branches or have acquired controlling stakes in banks in neighbouring countries.
Chuka noted that these developments have far- reaching implications for bank supervision, including the need to ensure that staff members are fully knowledgeable in the application of international standards and codes in the bank supervision.
He added that this is why commercial banks in Africa are implementing Basel standards for bank supervision.
Malawi in January this year rolled out Basel II—international standards that guard against financial and operational risks—and according to the governor, RBM hopes to catch up with those already on Basel III.
According to the central bank, the five-day workshop covers intricate and crucial issues in bank supervision and will also provide an opportunity to hear a banker’s perspective of corporate governance and risk management among others.