Watch: Former Central Bank Governor’s stern warning

Former Central Bank Governor, Francis Vassallo, said, that ignoring the recommendations by the European Banking Authority would be akin to an ostrich burying its head in the sand and described it as gravely wrong.

Vassallo was interviewed by regarding the European Banking Authority findings. In his replies, described the report as “worrying” for Malta in general, the financial services and also the Maltese industry. While he steered away from the Pilatus Bank case, the former Central Bank Governor said that the EBA found the auditor at fault when a number of shortcomings were found in the procedural operations of the Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit (FIAU).

He argued that the FIAU should take up the recommendations given by EBA, saying that admitting that mistakes were made would be an honorable thing to do. He described that adopting the recommendations and implementing them would be a postive decision and the way forward for the FIAU.

EBA also gave its recommendations to the FIAU and said he hoped that these would be taken up by the FIAU.

The reply by the FIAU has been described as “weak” by observers in the sector. The EBA published its findings following a BUL investigation into the FIAU. The damning report included some eight recommendations. The FIAU now has ten days to reply.