Former Scotia Group Jamaica boss Bruce Bowen has been replaced as president of the Jamaica Bankers Association (JBA) by Maureen Hayden-Cater, president of First Global Bank.
Bowen who was re-elected as JBA head in July, has resigned, following his promotion to senior vice-president for Caribbean banking by Scotiabank Canada, effective September 1. He will be based in Toronto.
Hayden-Cater was unanimously elected JBA president at an extraordinary general meeting held September 20.
Nigel Holness, managing director of CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank Jamaica, was also elected vice-president of the JBA, while Philip Armstrong, managing director of Sagicor Bank Jamaica was returned as treasurer, and Pamela Smith, general manager of MF&G Trust and Finance, as secretary.
"The association's memorandum and articles require that if the president for any reason vacates the position, there will have to be a new election," Hayden-Cater told the Financial Gleaner.
She is the second woman to head the association, following Minna Israel who was the group's chief spokesperson before Bowen when she ran the country operations of RBTT Bank Jamaica, now RBC Royal Bank Jamaica.
Hayden-Cater has already indicated that the banking group is lobbying the central bank to ease up on its tight liquidity policy and release funds back into the market by buying back securities. The central bank says discussions continue but has already released J$2 billion through a repurchase offer.
But the JBA president also says FATCA requirements and vigilance on 'know your customer' (KYC) rules are ongoing issues.
"The upcoming FATCA regulations will demand a further injection of cash to make sure our business is tight. It could very well be costing us five times what it was before," she said.
"Everybody now has a compliance department. There are also the reporting requirements. We will have to do it. There is no question about it."
FATCA is a United States law that aims to net tax dodgers. It focusses on foreign financial assets and offshore accounts of American persons in excess of US$50,000.
The law requires financial institutions to report information on account holders to the US Internal Revenue Service.
Hayden-Cater said legislative changes which were hoped for could assist the banks with compliance.
"One of the things we talk about is sharing information. The difficulty is customer privacy that does not allow us to do that. We may need legislative changes," she said.
"Under KYC, the United States produces a list of persons who are persona non grata . We do not have a list in Jamaica. Things like this are very costly because each individual institution has to do it on their own," she said.
Hayden-Cater has been president of First Global Bank Limited since August 1, 2010. Her banking background includes 22 years, mostly in Jamaica but interspersed with a four-year placement in Honduras where she served as corporate bank head and country risk manager in Tegucigalpa, from 1999 to 2003.
A graduate of the University of the West Indies, Mona, Hayden-Cater holds a master of science degree in economics, specialising in quantitative economics and econometrics, and a bachelor of arts degree in economics and mathematics.
She is married with two daughters, speaks Spanish, enjoys community service and is an active member of her church.