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Credit unions meet Basel Committee

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20 Jan 17

An international credit union delegation has met with the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision to discuss regulation.

The delegation, led by World Council of Credit Unions Vice President and General Counsel Michael Edwards, travelled to Switzerland to meet with Basel Committee Secretary General William Coen and other senior members of the Basel Committee Secretariat to discuss how best to ensure proportionate regulation for credit unions.

During the meeting, the credit union delegation urged the Basel Committee to reduce regulatory burdens on credit unions, suggesting the Committee should carve out non-internationally active institutions like credit unions from Basel Committee standards and to establish a working group focused on considering the potential impact of proposed Basel Committee standards on community-based financial institutions.

Among other items discussed at the meeting, the credit union delegation welcomed the Committee’s proposal to clarify its rules on correspondent banking to help make it easier for credit unions to establish and maintain correspondent banking relationships.

World Council's Michael Edwards said: “We believe that carving out locally focused financial institutions from Basel Committee standards is one of the best ways to limit regulatory burdens on credit unions and other community-based financial co-operatives. Credit union regulators frequently look to Basel Committee standards, even if they are not required to implement Basel Committee rules on locally focused institutions per se."

ABCUL Head of Policy and Communications Matt Bland said: “The new proposal will reduce the regulatory burden on banks when providing correspondent banking to credit unions, and therefore help open up access to payments for credit unions and the availability of transactional and payment accounts. 

“It’s vital that credit union regulation – at global level as well as the national level – is fair and proportionate and does not stifle our movement. ABCUL is proud to be the British member of the World Council of Credit Unions, working together with our international colleagues to achieve a level of influence that would be impossible if we all acted alone.”

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