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Thu, 18 September 2014 16:39:05
Sri Lanka bank directors told to be more attentive
03 Nov, 2011 06:38:58
Nov 03, 2011 (LBO) - Sri Lanka's banking regulator has urged bank directors to be more diligent and use their skills to ensure the health of their own institutions and that of the financial system.
Central bank governor Nivard Cabraal said that although the economy was growing fast with the end of the island's 30-year ethnic war in 2009, global uncertainty made it tough to maintain the pace and stability.

"You must attend board meetings, you must be reading board papers, asking the right questions and ensure you use the knowledge you have been selected for," he told a bank directors’ symposium organised by the regulator.

"We need to see those skills being used at the banks themselves," he told the forum attended by around 200 chairmen, directors and chief executives of 33 licensed banks.

"We have to admit not all those skills are being used. We want to see them being made use of at the board room."

Cabraal said bank directors should closely monitor the work of their chief executive officers, get involved in preparing strategy and be more aware of their institutions' financial health.

"You should keep your CEOs on their toes, ask the tough and probing questions so they live up to the scrutiny and play your part in preparing strategy - we want to see input from you as well," he said.

"You've got to know where the bank will be in five years time, know from where you get funds, to which sectors you lend, the succession plan.

"Directors will have to take more interest to ensure answers to questions."

Directors of banks should also familiarise themselves with new developments in the banking sector and new rules that are coming into effect.

"You also need to protect high standards in your staff, ensure the fitness and propriety of your staff and achieve oversight through sub committees."

Bank directors were also responsible for ensuring the banks complied with new central bank directives on a 'customer charter' to ensure they treated customers in a fair manner.

Cabraal said it was important for directors to ensure the financial health of their individual institutions as they were all connected and problems at one could spread through the entire system.

"All banks are interconnected. If one bank fails, others fail. You must ensure safety first," Cabraal said.

"If you are safe all the others will also be safe and no one can inflict any contagion effect on the other."
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READER COMMENT(S)
2. Deiyo Sakki Nov 03
Gov, why did your political masters dump Cader? You are an influential member of the administration, at least that's what you want others to think. If so did you raise your concern with the powers that be?
1. Jamaal Zeinudin Nov 03
This is why CBSL pushed a certain leading private bank to appoint someone who cannot spell governance to their board.