The local financial services industry has gained significant ground in the past years and currently boasts over 40 licence holders regulated under the Financial Institutions Act. Licence holders undertake a number of activities, including lending, factoring, payment services, money broking and the issuance of e-money.

Over the last few months, a number of financial institutions, with the assistance of KPMG in Malta, have come together to form the first association representing the industry: the Financial Institutions Malta Association (Fima).

The objective of Fima is to bring together industry players to spearhead growth in this flourishing segment of the financial services industry. It aims to provide opportunities for participation in direct communication and cooperation with local and European regulatory authorities, ensuring positive development for the industry and Malta as a whole.

Fima’s objective is to bring together industry players to spearhead growth

The association has already been active on a number of fronts, including providing feedback on consultation documents issued by regulatory bodies.

The official launch of the association took place at the Palace Hotel in Sliema on October 18 and was attended by a large number of locally-licensed financial institutions and representatives from local authorities, including the Central Bank of Malta, the Malta Financial Services Authority and the Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit.

Fima chairman Steve Grech emphasised the need for a formal voice for financial institutions. He explained that the main scope of this association would be to create a platform through which financial institutions are brought together and can be formally involved in discussions, provide feedback and participate in the various initiatives taking place in the financial services industry and beyond, both locally and also at international fora.

Mr Grech thanked KPMG in Malta and the first group of financial institutions for taking the initiative and dedicating resources to set up Fima as a body striving to “advance, promote and represent the interests of licensed financial institutions in Malta”.

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