On 4 December 2019, the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) has published its Supervisory Priorities for 2020, laying out detailed key areas where the Authority will be focusing its supervisory efforts for the year ahead, based on the objectives set out in the Strategic Plan 2019-2021.
The key areas of activity will range from governance and culture, financial crime and retail investor protection to cross-border operations, cybersecurity and financial soundness. These activities will be supplementing the dedicated priorities that the MFSA has set out for the different areas of the financial services industry.
These priorities have been developed taking into account the market environment, legislative and regulatory developments, the supervisory programmes of European supervisory authorities, recommendations by international standard-setters, as well as the MFSA's past supervisory experience.
The MFSA has also indicated the regulatory and supervisory tools being used in carrying out its work, including onsite visits, desk-based reviews, thematic reviews, supervisory engagement and deep-dives addressing specific risk areas.
Commenting on the launch of the Supervisory Priorities, MFSA CEO Joseph Cuschieri noted that “The MFSA’s recent organisational restructuring brought the three pillars of our supervisory strategy - prudential, conduct and financial crime compliance supervision - under the same remit. We are also investing in Cybercrime and Cybersecurity expertise within the Authority as a fourth pillar of our supervisory strategy. This was required as part of our adoption of a more holistic approach to supervision throughout the lifecycle of licensed entities.” Cuschieri added that "One of our key commitments of our supervisory remit is to increase our engagement with industry and the public. By virtue of this publication we are increasing accountability and transparency, enabling industry and consumers to better understand our work and priorities."