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Frequently Asked Questions
Complaints may be directed to the Office of the Financial Services Ombudsman (OFSO), First Floor, Central Bank building, Eric Williams Plaza, Independence Square. The OFSO investigates, mediates and resolves complaints brought in by any member of the public against commercial banks, non-bank financial institutions and insurance companies. Additional details may be accessed by visiting http://www.ofso.org.tt/
A financial institution is required to make copies of audited financial statements available for inspection by its depositors and other customers upon request. This information must be kept at each of its offices. In addition, the Financial Institutions Act 2008 requires all financial institutions to publish audited financial statements in a daily newspaper within three months after the close of its financial year.
Where a customer has an established business relationship with a financial institution and the funds being deposited are in accordance with normal activity on the account (e.g. salary deposits to the accounts from the customer’s employer), the customer may not be required to disclose the source of funds.
The cornerstone of banking business is the solicitation and acceptance of sums of money from the public on current account or deposit account which can be withdrawn on demand and the solicitation and granting of loans and other credit exposures.
The requirements for the establishment of a commercial bank are set out at Part III of the Financial Institutions Act, 2008 (FIA), entitled “Licensing of Financial Institutions”. However, persons desirous of obtaining a licence to conduct either banking business or business of a financial nature should before submitting an application, first write to the Inspector of Financial Institutions at the Central Bank advising of that fact. This would enable the Central Bank to arrange a meeting with the applicant prior to the submission of formal application to discuss the nature of the business the applicant is seeking to engage in and also to advise what type of license, if any, should be applied for.
The Central Bank does not offer deposit insurance. The Deposit Insurance Corporation (DIC) was established by the Central Bank and Financial Institutions (Non-Banking) (Amendment) Act, 1986 to manage a Fund to provide insurance protection for depositors of the banks and non-banks regulated under the Financial Institutions Act, 2008. All banks and non-banks are required to be members of the DIC. See the DIC website for details on the level of insurance guaranteed to the depositors in the event that a member institution fails.
The Inspector of Financial Institutions is one of the Executive positions at the Bank. The Inspector has responsibility for the Financial Institutions Supervision department.
The Financial Institutions Supervision Department (FISD) is responsible for the supervision and regulation of all persons that fall under the regulatory ambit of the Central Bank with a view to maintaining confidence in, and promoting the soundness and stability of the financial system. In fulfilling these responsibilities, FISD evaluates applications for licences, and monitors and examines the activities and operations of those regulated entities.
A list of regulated financial institutions may be accessed on the Central Bank’s website at http://www.central-bank.org.tt/content/supervision-regulation Please click on the tab for each sector for more details.
No. All financial institutions in Trinidad and Tobago are not supervised by the Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago. For example, the Central Bank does not supervise institutions that carry out securities business only, credit unions, and building societies.
• Institutions carrying on the business of banking or business of a financial nature in accordance with the Financial Institutions Act 2008;
• Insurance companies and insurance intermediaries (agents, brokers, adjusters etc) registered under the Insurance Act Chap 84:01;
• Private occupational pension plans;
• Bureaux de change operators; and
• The financial activities of the Home Mortgage Bank (merchant banking, mortgage institution, trust company and collective investment schemes classes of business).