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Newsletter for financial enterprises in the Dutch Caribbean - Edition 8 - September 2015
Dear relation,
You are receiving the 8th 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 in het Nederlands
Topics in this news bulletin:
  Attention points self-assessment
  Consumer flyers
 Maximum late repayment charge
 Amendment Guideline Wwft, Wwft BES (i.e. the Money laundering and terrorism financing (BES Islands) Act), and the Sanctions Act
Attention points self-assessment
The AFM received a filled in self-assessment from all enterprises in February and March 2015. The results have led to a number of attention points:

• A number of enterprises do not have an up-to-date description of the administrative organisation. The administrative organisation and internal control procedures must be described and laid down accurately to ensure the integrity of the business operations and to ensure that the business operations are well controlled. Of course, the description must be kept up-to-date;

• A number of enterprises indicate that they have not made arrangements for the professional competence requirement. It is important that these enterprises ensure that professional competence is arranged properly in the short term;

• A number of enterprises indicate that the most important customer information regarding financial situation, knowledge/experience, risk appetite and objectives is asked however that this is not always documented. This information must also be recorded in the customer file, only then is it possible to determine subsequently whether an appropriate advice has been given;

• Many enterprises do not have a policy against tie-in sales. It is important that enterprises take the customer's interest into account when selling products and that they do not only base this on the commercial interest.

• Some of the enterprises pay substantial closing and ongoing commissions to intermediaries. The AFM expects the commission to be in a reasonable proportion to the necessary work performed and the quality of the services provided. The commission should not lead to the interests of the consumer or client being compromised.

All enterprises to which the attention points apply have been approached by the AFM to reach an agreement on how these points should be dealt with. The AFM has approached all of the enterprises to which the attention points apply to reach an agreement on how these points should be dealt with. 

Consumer flyers
The AFM produced a flyer in April 2015 to inform consumers about what they should pay attention to when they wish to borrow money. This flyer 'Borrowing Wisely' is available in Papiamentu, English and Dutch.

In order to help consumers when concluding a loan, the AFM asks all enterprises that provide loans to hand out this flyer to consumers or to make these flyers available, for example, on the counter.
 Link to the downloadpage of the flyer/flyers
Maximum late repayment charge
From various file inspections performed by the AFM, it is apparent that not all enterprises comply with the maximum charge that may be charged to consumers in the event of late repayment of their loan or mortgage.

It is regulated in article 7:21 Bfm BES (Financial Markets (BES Islands) Decree) and article 2:5b Rfm BES (Financial markets (BES Islands) Regulation) that the late repayment charge may not exceed a maximum amount. Article 2:5b Rfm BES contains a formula from which it is apparent how high the maximum allowed late repayment charge may be. This charge is calculated on a daily basis.

According to this formula, the late repayment charge may not be higher than the credit interest percentage agreed in the credit agreement. This has been determined in such a manner that a consumer with a loan who is experiencing payment difficulties would also be hit by strongly rising debts in addition to the interest that must be paid.

The AFM asks companies to check whether their contracts comply with this provision and if this is not the case, to amend the conditions accordingly.

Amendment Guideline Wwft, Wwft BES (i.e. the Money laundering and terrorism financing (BES Islands) Act), and the Sanctions Act 
Intermediaries are obliged to comply with the provisions in the Money laundering and terrorism financing (BES Islands) Act (Wwft BES). The AFM is the responsible supervisor in Caribbean Netherlands for the Wwft supervision among intermediaries.

The Wwft BES contains two main obligations: performing a customer investigation and the reporting obligation. Although money flows generally run via banks, the intermediary has an independent responsibility to comply with the requirements of the Wwft BES.

The AFM has published a revised AFM Guideline Wwft for European Netherlands. In this Guideline, which was published in March 2015, an explanation is provided in chapter 11 of the AFM's role with regard to the supervision of the Wwft BES and the most important legal provisions for the Wwft and Wwft BES. The guideline is available in Dutch only.
You can find the new Guideline via the link below:

Link to the new Guideline

If you have any questions with regard to this newsletter, please send an email to

More information can be found on the Caribbean Netherlands website

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