Madison, WI-Credit union regulators from around the world convened at the World Council of Credit Unions' International Leadership Institute in the Bahamas in August to partake in the second International Regulator's Roundtable.
World Council (WOCCU) designed the discussion group, which was first held at last year's Forum in Brisbane, Australia, to fill the need for credit union regulators to communicate with one another on issues affecting regulation and legislation.
"There is no other forum that allows credit union regulators from around the world to meet. WOCCU is pleased to act as a platform for them, providing space where they can share best practices and discuss common issues," said Arthur Arnold, World Council president and CEO.
WOCCU's Legislative and Regulatory Affairs Board Committee hosted the event, chaired by WOCCU board member David Chatfield, president and CEO of the California and Nevada Credit Unions, who acted as moderator. Arnold was present at the Roundtable discussion, along with other WOCCU senior staff—vice president and COO Brian Branch, and senior manager of trade association services David Grace.
Participants included representatives of regulators from Australia, the Bahamas, Brazil, Canada, Guatemala, Guyana, Ireland, Kenya, Peru, Poland and the United States of America.
Specific topics covered included demonstrating the credit union difference in a Single Financial Services Authority environment, the impact of the Basel II Capitol Accord and the newly proposed International Accounting Standards by IASB for the treatment of shares, mergers of credit unions in their respective countries, and other trends regarding the supervision of credit unions in the regulatory world. JoAnne Johnson, National Credit Union Administration's chairman of the Board, who attended the Roundtable, also spoke at the Institute's VIP reception. During her address she reaffirmed the importance also for credit union regulators worldwide to come together and learn from each other.
Roger Little, chairman of NASCUS commented, "What I have learned is that all credit union regulators all over the world, are dealing with the same issues, whether their credit unions are big or small, and whether they are located in developing, in transitional, or in mature markets. Therefore there is so much knowledge and experience we can share with each other!" The popularity of such an approach is apparent. This year's attendance was double that of last year, and plans for future Roundtables are underway. "All participating regulators have requested WOCCU to expand the program for regulators in WOCCU's 2005 World Credit Union Conference [the renamed Institute] in Rome, Italy next year," said Arnold.
World Council of Credit Unions is the global trade association and development agency for credit unions. World Council promotes the sustainable development of credit unions and other financial cooperatives around the world to empower people through access to high quality and affordable financial services. World Council advocates on behalf of the global credit union system before international organizations and works with national governments to improve legislation and regulation. Its technical assistance programs introduce new tools and technologies to strengthen credit unions' financial performance and increase their outreach.
World Council has implemented more than 290 technical assistance programs in 71 countries. Worldwide, 56,000 credit unions in 101 countries serve 200 million people. Learn more about World Council's impact around the world at www.woccu.org.