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Newsletter for financial enterprises in the Caribbean Netherlands - 6th Edition - October 2014
Dear relation,

You hereby receive the sixth edition of the Newsletter for financial enterprises on Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba. 
If you prefer to read the newsletter in Dutch follow this link:

  Link naar nieuwsbrief NL
Topics in this newsletter:
  Announcement of Self Assessment (SA)
  The quality of precontractual information concerning credit has been improving since last year
  The quality of complaints management leaves room for improvement
  The description of business processes is still not in order
  The rules on inducements have been adjusted  
Announcement of Self Assessment (SA)
The AFM would like to obtain insight into the developments in the market of the Caribbean Netherlands. AFM has sent a questionnaire, the Self Assessment (SA), to all registered enterprises in the Wfm register for the Caribbean Netherlands. This is a follow-up to the SA that was sent in January 2013.

The findings of the SA, among others, allow the AFM to adjust its supervision where necessary.

All licensees will receive the new SA at the start of 2015. The questionnaire is available in both the Dutch and English language. Enterprises have six weeks to complete the SA. The process is further explained in the cover letter.
The quality of precontractual information concerning credit has been improving since last year
The majority of financial enterprises on Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba have improved the quality of precontractual credit information. This is the conclusion from the follow-up investigation performed by the AFM into the quality of this information. Various enterprises have used the example made available for this purpose by the AFM, which can be found on our website for the Caribbean Netherlands

Unfortunately, the AFM also has to conclude that not yet all enterprises comply (in full) with the applicable regulations. The relevant enterprises have been notified thereof. They are expected to adjust the information as soon as possible.
The quality of complaints management leaves room for improvement
This year, the AFM investigated the quality of complaints management at various enterprises, and various banks and insurers received requests for information from the AFM. The findings of the investigations were afterwards provided to the relevant enterprises. We have provided some examples from the investigation below:

What has the AFM assessed?
The AFM assessed inter alia:
  • whether the complaints are recorded in a central register;
  • where there is a complaints committee;
  • whether there exists complaints handling policy;
  • whether and how complaints are reported internally and
  • whether a list of complaints received in 2013 has been created.
Main findings
It appeared from the responses received that:
  • complaints are often not recorded centrally, but decentrally by department;
  • in some cases, there was no policy for complaints handling or the policy was inadequate in several respects;
  • management is not based or only based to a very limited extent on complaints;
  • several enterprises were unable to provide a list of all complaints received in 2013. 

The AFM has urged the enterprises that were investigated to improve the process surrounding complaints and suggested that the Internal Audit Service assess this process. The AFM may enquire after the findings in the future.

The description of business processes is still not in order
All intermediaries and credit providers must have a description of their business processes. The AFM has noted that this description is not in order at some enterprises. Enterprisis often do not make a distinction between working processes and business processes. These processes are often confused.

For example, working processes are defined as:
  • when is a client accepted for a certain insurance;
  • how a notice of claim is handled and/or paid out.
Business processes are for example:
  • procedures relating to the competence of employees (checking diplomas and laying down which diplomas or what level of experience is required to be allowed to perform certain activities);
  • laying down integrity-sensitive positions and the assessment of integrity and reliability (for example by means of the form entitled Guaranteeing Reliability and Integrity)
  • incident regulations (pointing out the obligation to report incidents and breaches of reliability and the registration of incidents);
  • a description of the manner in which the obligation to retain advice files is guaranteed (what is included in a file, who has to collect this information, who checks);
  • a description of the enterprise's control structure.

You can read about the relevant rules on our website. You are requested to check your descriptions and adjust them where necessary. You can find the document entitled 'Example description Business Processes' on our website by following this link: 
Forms for the Caribbean Netherlands
The rules on inducements have been adjusted
High inducements are not uncommon in the Caribbean Netherlands. Arrangement fees for life insurance, especially, are often high. ‘High inducements’ in this connection means that they are not proportionate to the activities performed. The risk exists that the advisor or intermediary will not act in the best interest of his client, but rather be led by the amount of the inducement he stands to receive for a product or service.
It is expected that with effect from 1 January 2015, inducements must be proportionate to the activities that are necessary for suitable services or contribute to the quality of the services. This also applies to the inducements received by advisors and intermediaries who issue advice on or provide intermediary services with respect to financial products other than insurance. In any event, the remuneration of an advisor or intermediary may not lead to the interests of the consumer or client becoming jeopardised as a result.

The ban on inducements as introduced in the Netherlands does not apply in the Caribbean Netherlands.

If you have any questions as a result of this news bulletin, please send an e-mail to We will respond as soon as possible.

You can read more useful information on our website

  To the Caribbean Netherlands website
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