Category - Banking & Finance

Banking & Finance Crime and Security U.S. Global Policies

Furor over AML/CFT Evaluations of Caribbean States – Who Makes the Next Move?

Furor over AML/CFT Evaluations of Caribbean States – Who Makes the Next Move? Ambassador Curtis A. Ward (16 May 2017) — A number of Caribbean governments have responded bitterly to the recent negative “evaluation” of their anti-money laundering and countering financing of terrorism (AFL/CFT) legal and administrative capacities. More specifically, the U.S. State Department 2016 INSCR named nine Caribbean countries, four of which are CARICOM Member States (Antigua and Barbuda, The...

Banking & Finance Crime and Security Jamaican Diaspora Jamaican/Caribbean Diaspora

Western Union Takes on Jamaican Lottery Scammers!

Western Union Takes on Jamaican Lottery Scammers! Curtis A. Ward (11 Jan. 2017) — I went to Western Union (WU) yesterday (January 10, 2017) and sent some money to Jamaica. Upon handing me my receipt the agent gave me a number to call WU to answer a few questions before the money transfer would be completed. You can well imagine my consternation and immediate reaction. However, on calling WU the first question to me was whether my money transfer was in response to a lottery and the purpose...

Banking & Finance Geopolitics U.S. Global U.S. Politics

Russia Warns U.S., Sanctions Will Affect Cooperation on Syria

Russia Warns U.S., Sanctions Will Affect Cooperation on Syria Curtis A. Ward (26 Dec 2016) —The Russian Government, in response to new U.S. sanctions on members of Russia’s financial sector, imposed on December 23, 2016, warns the Obama Administration of the sanctions’ adverse effect on Russian cooperation on Syria.  A statement by the official representative of Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Alexander Lukashevik warned specifically that, “If the Administration continues...

Banking & Finance Caribbean Regional - Political/Social/Economic Global

Sanctions Enforcement – Violations and De-Risking

Sanctions Enforcement – Violations and De-risking (08 Nov. 2016) — Discussions at various levels throughout the Caribbean region on the threat of de-risking by U.S. and European banks have focused primarily on the debilitating possible effects on Caribbean financial institutions and Caribbean countries’ economic development.  Without access to U.S. and European banks for correspondent banking relationships and lack of future access for payable through accounts and other financial...

Banking & Finance Jamaican/Caribbean Diaspora

Taxing Caribbean Diaspora Savings and FATCA Reporting

Taxing Caribbean Diaspora Savings and FATCA Reporting (Nov. 03, 2016) — It is common practice for members of the Caribbean Diaspora to open savings accounts in local financial institutions in their countries of origin.  Such accounts are not intended as means to evade U.S. taxes and they do not violate U.S. laws. These accounts are opened for various legitimate reasons – retirement savings, building retirement homes, support of family members, and taking advantage of higher interest...

Banking & Finance Caribbean Regional - Political/Social/Economic

Caribbean Financial Sector Challenged by U.S. FATCA Requirements

Caribbean Financial Sector Challenged by U.S. FATCA Requirements (31 Oct. 2016) — With the January 2017 reporting date fast approaching most Caribbean countries still lack the legal and operational capacities to implement effectively the United States Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) provisions.  This situation exists even though Caribbean-wide compliance with adequate capacity to carry out FATCA commitments would be an indication to U.S. banks that Caribbean financial...