Deloitte Regulatory & Financial Crime Conference 2018 highlights the financial services industry’s responsibilities in an increasingly unequal and polarized world

Deloitte’s third annual Regulatory and Financial Crime Conference 2018 (RFCC) highlights the responsibilities of industry professionals and the importance of financial regulation to provide strength, safety and hope in an increasingly unequal and polarised world.

Part of the Deloitte Global Financial Crime Symposium series, this year’s RFCC in Dubai held on April 18 addressed the need for Middle East financial institutions and regulators to strategize, innovate and transform.

“The global financial services industry is at a critical juncture,” said Bhavin Shah, Partner, Financial Advisory, Deloitte, Middle East. “Practitioners have a responsibility to not only work towards a stronger and safer financial system, but to also provide hope and opportunity to wider society, as global inequality rises. To achieve this, both regulators and industry players must prioritize financial stability, financial crime compliance, and financial inclusion.”

The conference programme brought together 23 regional and global speakers who shared valuable industry insight and practical knowledge across a series of expert panel debates and speaker presentations on key topics including the UAE’s efforts to combat financial crime as the 2019 Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering (FATF) Mutual Evaluation approaches, the growing regulatory challenges in disruptive times, art and financial crime and legal issues in financial crime cases.

More than 250 practitioners, regulators, and business and key opinion leaders, representing over 100 companies attended the conference to debate how to navigate through the disruptive forces that are redefining how Middle East financial institutions and regulators need to operate in the future.

For the first time, this year’s conference also featured a digital expo of nine Deloitte and other provider solutions, who showcased new technologies in the industry including blockchain, Know Your Client (KYC), and cryptocurrencies.

The Deloitte Middle East 2018 Financial Services Regulatory Barometer was also launched at the conference, providing Deloitte’s regional outlook for the industry and regulatory environment in the year ahead.

Given these priorities, financial technology (FinTech) was a significant theme throughout the conference. SachinSondhi, Deloitte Global Financial Services Industry Leader, discussed the future of financial services, focusing on key trends in business model transformation in the years ahead. David Dixon, Worldwide Counter Fraud & Financial Crime Industry Leader at IBM, described how emerging technologies, including artificial intelligence (AI), are being used to combat financial crime.

“A structured approach must be taken to effectively and efficiently deploy innovative technologies in financial crime compliance,” noted Michael Shepard, Global AML, Sanctions and Financial Crime Leader, Deloitte. “Regulatory frameworks must also adapt to the changing FinTech landscape. I am pleased with the level of interest and commitment demonstrated by both regulatory bodies and clients in the UAE to enhance regulatory frameworks and maximize the benefits of these technologies.”

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