25 March 2016

Mrinal Roy: Breached Trust and Political Pipe Dreams

Mauritius and no country for that matter, can hope to achieve its ambition to establish a vibrant and prosperous international financial services sector of repute and attract top financial operators in the sector or provide an enabling and safe environment for substantial foreign direct investments to boost growth towards transforming the country into a high income economy, if the sacrosanct rule of banking confidentiality is irresponsibly breached.

Unlike whistle-blowers providing information on covert bank accounts opened in tax havens to evade taxes, intentional disclosure of fiduciary and confidential information regarding individual account holders in a commercial bank is unacceptable and condemnable. Such wanton and damning leaks of privileged information undermine the foundations of one of the major pillars of our growingly more and more services-based economy. It is tantamount to a hara-kiri of the financial services sector.…
The intentional disclosure of the confidential terms of a loan contracted by the ex-Minister of Finance in the press in violation of the rule of banking confidentiality enshrined in the Banking Act is profoundly damaging for the country. If commercial banks cannot through the highest benchmarks of banking ethics, rigorous in-house procedures and a robust culture of banking confidentiality safeguard the confidential terms of a loan agreement contracted by the Minister of Finance of the country, how on earth can we expect foreign investors or financial operators to trust and use the services of our financial services sector?…

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