The GCC International Advisory Group Meeting on Banking Risk and Resilience

16 January 2014, St Regis Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

The Asian Banker, in conjunction with leading heads of risk and compliance in the GCC banking community, is convening an international advisory panel to assist in thinking through the priorities in building banking resilience and managing the perception of the industry by the international community.

It is critical to have a region wide industry-led process to identify and share new knowledge on banking resilience, as well as serve as an early warning system on risks which are potentially widespread and carry systemic implications. Such risks may include, for example, a widespread incidence on concentration risk on the credit or funding side, mispricing of risk, global counterparty risk due to interconnectedness of markets, and the potential for contagion across markets and regions.

In addition, the GCC banking community has to proactively form its own unique industry response to growing demands brought on by sweeping global banking reforms. It also needs to develop an effective communication capability to persuasively inform the international financial community of the unique character of the financial services sector in this part of the world. For example, GCC banks tend to be more sophisticated and robust than is commonly perceived by international analysts and this has reputational repercussions that needs to be addressed.

The international advisory panel will be chaired by Mr William Isaac, former chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and the vice-chair will be Dr Gordian Gaeta, international resource director at The Asian Banker. The advisory panel is specifically put together in order to share their own rich experiences and the issues emanating from their respective jurisdictions and at the same time, to advise the GCC banking industry on shaping its own response.

The heads of risk, compliance and business lines from a full range of institutions will meet with the panel on 16 January 2014 to build a framework to respond to issues faced by the GCC banking industry, which include:

  • Prioritizing the international commitments expected from the FSB, the BIS and major global jurisdictions.
  • Understanding how the GCC is perceived while at the same time devising a communication format that could bridge the perception issues
  • Ensuring that the compliance commitments of the GCC banking community is also business friendly
  • Setting the framework to meet the demands of an increasingly competitive industry

The Asian Banker which is organizing this meeting, supported by ADCB, will be providing the data and research support for the discussions. In essence, the following data will be circulated for the discussions:

  • Balance sheet position, especially on key liquidity ratios
  • Governance structure and risk infrastructure
  • Risk management achievements and business impact weighted against competitive conditions
  • Funding and monitoring capabilities

Financial crises happen when financial institutions are vulnerable to widespread underestimation of risks, misallocate resources in balancing risk and compliance needs, and when they are unable to manage public perception and maintain confidence. This annual meeting serves as a platform for leading GCC risk and compliance heads to mitigate those threats and make a definitive contribution to shaping the banking landscape for their region. 


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