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The government blames the Financial Services Regulatory Commission (FSRC) for the current problem involving British philanthropist Jack Stroll.
The FSRC has not commented on the matter since it was revealed around three weeks ago.
The issue relates to the Global Bank of Commerce and concerns about its operations.
Stroll’s British charity sent $1 million to the bank to aid with hurricane relief in Barbuda; however, the funds have not been accounted for.
The bank’s clients are also experiencing difficulties withdrawing funds, leading to doubts about the bank’s financial stability.
Despite knowing about the situation before it became public, Prime Minister Gaston Browne’s government denies any responsibility for the missing funds and distancing itself from the issue.
Chief of Staff in the Office of the Prime Minister Lionel Max Hurst said these concerns, letters from the opposition, and the Barbuda Council should be directed to the FSRC, not the government.
“It is not the government’s fault, the FSRC which is the police arm that has the responsibility to ensure banks behave as they ought to…they are the ones these letters should be addressed to, not the prime minister,” Hurst said
According to Hurst, there has been no irregularity or wrongdoing in the transfer of one million dollars.
He further explains that the government has already transferred the said amount to a dedicated account for Barbuda’s benefit.
Antigua and Barbuda’s financial services industry is regulated by the FSRC, which is responsible for maintaining the sector’s stability.
However, the regulator is currently facing the challenge of demonstrating its ability to address the ongoing issues faced by the Global Bank of Commerce. The bank is led by CEO Brian Stuart-Young, and its Chief Regulatory Officer is Paul Ashe.
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