The South African Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) released a set of Banking Conduct Standards on July 8 — a first step in rolling out a comprehensive market-conduct regulatory framework for the country’s financial sector.
“What the standard will help us with is … to monitor the conduct of banks by ensuring that their customers are central to the development of product, and to the provision of services,” said Sindiswa Makhubalo, Head of Banks and Payment Providers Supervision. “This is a first step to what we call the Conduct of Financial Institutions Bill, which we are working on at this present moment.”
The regulator understands that culture plays a key role in ensuring that bank behaviors are in keeping with social interests. The FSCA’s conduct standards thus aim directly at tying customer outcomes to accountability for related conduct. Makhubalo went on to say that “In the past, both here in South Africa and even across the globe, we’ve seen customers’ trust in banks being eroded over time. But what this now does, the conduct standards really give the customers a voice.”