Posted by Evangeline Allen on Aug 28, 2019
Rotarian Louisianne Josiah presents her Classification Talk to General Membership.
Classification Talk by,
Rotarian Louisianne Josiah
At Rotary Club of Antigua Meeting, August 28, 2019
Classification: Compliance- Financial
I attended the University of the West Indies- Cave Hill Campus some time ago. There, I completed a Bachelor’s degree in Management with a concentration in Finance. As part of the course curriculum I completed two courses- Regulatory Environment of Banking and Finance and Managing Financial Institutions. A common area of study in both courses was Financial Regulation and how businesses and governments must ensure that that they implement systems and controls to be in compliance with their regulatory requirements. And I must say, of all the courses that I completed at UWI, and the various topics covered this aspect of financial regulation was of most interest to me.
Naturally I decided to seek employment in Antigua in the area of financial regulation. I applied to both regulatory authorities on island and was successful with one. Therefore, for the last six and a half years I worked as a Financial Compliance Examiner. In this role, I provide supervision to all financial institutions in Antigua and Barbuda as it relates to their roles and responsibilities to prevent, detect, deter and report incidences of Money Laundering and the Financing of Terrorism. By financial institutions I mean institutions such as, banks, insurance companies, money service businesses, real estate companies, credit unions, and even car dealerships and lawyers- when they conduct activities as a financial institution. In doing so I conduct inspections of these institutions, provide AML/CFT training, provide technical assistance in understanding the mandates of the laws, regulations and guidelines and receiving and analyzing mandatory reports.
I find all aspects of the job fascinating, it allows me to be kept abreast of new trends and developments in the field of AML/CFT while allowing for the latitude to develop action plans to ensure that our country is in compliance with international standards. The most challenging part of this career is the difficulty in getting persons to understand that compliance is not a hindrance to business, it is not just an unnecessary cost or just working to satisfy the US Government, but rather it is necessary in any business environment, not only for person’s protection but also that of the future generation. Being cussed out by certain business persons prove to be challenging but at the same time excitingJ. It’s also difficult to prove to the international community that as a small island state we sometimes go above and beyond what is required however is not acknowledged for our efforts due to the politics of international affairs.
Working in such a field of compliance, weather as a regulator or compliance officer in order to succeed, it is important that one is highly ethical, thorough, accountable, professional, objective and have high levels of integrity. One should also be self-motivated and remain aware of their environment and how changes can present opportunities or threats.
Within this dynamic business environment, and with the advances in technology I foresee improved efforts in regulating and supervising new ways of doing business such as  regulating digital assets to include things such as crypocurrencies, art, music, documents, books, websites, software, databases and designs. Also, dealing with increased data protection laws within the context of know your customer and preventing or minimizing cyber-attacks.
For the persons who are of the view that compliance is just added cost or is not important to business, I will leave you with this quote with you from former U.S Deputy Attorney, General – Paul McNulty: “If you think compliance is expensive, try non-compliance”.