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February 13, 2020

Benjamin Dunlap, Manager with Alvarez & Marsal Disputes and Investigations in Dubai, explains in an article he authored why financial institutions need to rethink their current compliance network. His op-ed article, “Making Financial Crime Compliance Count in the Middle East,” was published in Gulf Business.

In the article, Mr. Dunlap explains how banks in the Middle East fare as it relates to Financial Crime Compliance (FCC): “Regionally, there is also a lack of experience and exposure to best practice approaches to FCC at the middle management level, the first line of defence and in operations. A lack of understanding of the role in mitigating FCC risk at the first line is probably the most glaring issue. Many first line staff lack experience in detecting signs of financial crime. In some banks, operations staff do not receive appropriate training in FCC," Mr. Dunlap says.

“Unfortunately, a finite amount of resources leads to less willingness to plan proactively, especially in compliance. This is an area where the big international banks have really led the way, engaging with regulators and international standard setters to apply best practices. In our region, the attitude to regulation is to wait and see instead of adopting a proactive approach.”

Financial Crime Compliance in the Middle East
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This article was originally published in Gulf Business in February 2020.