OECS Financial Sector ‘Broadly Stable”

OECS Financial Sector ‘Broadly Stable”

The financial sector in the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) remained “broadly stable” last year and economic growth in the nine-member sub-regional grouping is projected at 3.1 per cent this year and 3.6 per cent in 2020.

Grenada’s Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell, who chaired the one-day meeting of the Monetary Council of the Eastern Caribbean central Bank (ECCB), said that the meeting had discussed the preliminary Financial Stability Report and that “developments in the ECCU banking sector through 2018 were largely positive”.

He said that the insurance sector was assessed as being “broadly stable and solvent with an increase in premiums” and that profitability was reported to have improved following the tumultuous events of 2017, when Hurricanes Maria and Irma battered several Caribbean countries including Dominica, St. Kitts-Nevis, the British Virgin islands and Antigua and Barbuda.“Several factors contributed to that outturn, including improvements in the tourism and construction sectors,” Mitchell said, “adding that several initiatives which would enhance financial stability in the sub-region were being pursued. These initiatives included implementation of a risk based supervisory approach for the commercial banking sector; regulation of the Caribbean Credit Card Corporation (4Cs); and the establishment of a credit bureau in the ECCU.”

Grenada is one of four OECS member states that have enacted the Harmonised Credit Reporting Bill which would pave the way for the creation of the credit bureau.

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