BAFT News and Press Releases


February 2014 Member Update

by User Not Found | Mar 06, 2014
February 2014 BAFT Member Update

BAFT Member Update

February 27, 2014

Table of Contents

Upcoming Events

  • March 20, 2014
    Webinar - Akshay: SWIFT Integration

  • May 4-7, 2014
    2014 North America Annual Conference & Regulatory Compliance Forum - La Jolla, CA

  • June 5-6, 2014
    New York Global Trade Finance Workshop - Deutsche Bank, New York, NY

  • July 10-11, 2014
    Global Payments Symposium - HSBC, New York, NY

  • July 24-25, 2014
    West Coast Global Trade Finance Workshop - City National Bank, Los Angeles, CA

  • September 28, 2014
    Global Councils Forum - Boston, MA
    (By Invitation Only)

  • November 12-14, 2014
    24th Annual Conference on International Trade - InterContinental Magnificent Mile Chicago, IL

  • January 19 – 21, 2015
    2015 BAFT Europe Forum - Amsterdam, Netherlands

Thank You To Our Affinity Sponsors

Platinum Sponsors

  • Standard Chartered

Silver Sponsors

Bank of America Merrill Lynch        PNC        Bank of Montreal        BNP Paribas

Citi        Deutsche Bank        HSBC        JP Morgan

Quote of the Week

“Offshore tax evasion undermines confidence in our tax system and deprives the United States of revenues necessary to protect and provide for its citizens. There is significant momentum to implement FATCA across the globe, and we will continue to work closely with our international partners to combat these illicit activities and raise global tax standards.”

U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Jacob J. Lew on the release of amended FATCA regulations, February 20, 2014

News and Developments

Registration Now Open for the 2014 BAFT North American Annual Conference & Regulatory Compliance Forum, May 4-7, 2014, La Jolla, CA

This year's conference boasts a line-up of top industry leaders speaking at the conference, with even more dedicated opportunities to network with your peers, colleagues and clients, in a world class venue that hosts a championship golf course and scenic views of the Pacific Ocean! Keynote speakers include:

  • Irene Dorner, President and Chief Executive Officer, HSBC USA
  • Frank Keating, President and Chief Executive Officer, American Bankers Association
  • Timothy Adams, President and Chief Executive Officer, Institute for International Finance
  • William Fox, Global Head of Financial Crimes Compliance, Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Early bird registration ends March 21. Click here for details and registration.

The All Day Regulatory Compliance Forum on May 7th is a one-day deeper dive discussion on the most significant regulatory and compliance issues affecting the industry today, including: KYC, FATCA, Dodd-Frank, OFAC Sanctions, and more.

Sponsorships are still available for the BAFT 2014 North America Annual Conference & Regulatory Compliance Forum, especially two exciting opportunities:

  • BAFT's Opening Dinner on Sunday, May 4, 2014, 7:30-10:00pm - this wonderful opportunity allows you to welcome our guests to the conference and showcase your brand and support for BAFT and the Transaction Banking Community.
  • BAFT's First Annual Run/Walk on monday Morning, May 5, 2014, 6:30-8:00am - conference attendees will enjoy a fun 5K run or 1K walk with views of the city and the Pacific Ocean.

Throughout the conference, sponsors will have access to about 400 top executives and practitioners in the transaction banking space and reach decision makers, facilitators and users in the buying cycle in one venue. In addition, sponsors will have the opportunity to strengthen their relationships with key partners and channels, network with other partners, and obtain new leads and increase ROI.

Click here for information on the full set of sponsorship opportunities.

BAFT Files Comment Letter on U.S. Liquidity Coverage Ratio (LCR) Proposal

On January 31, BAFT filed its comment letter on the U.S. proposal to implement the Basel III Liquidity Coverage Ratio (LCR) standards. The letter emphasized the need to ensure the appropriate treatment for transaction banking related services under the LCR.
Read the comment letter

BAFT Hosts Quarterly Ex-Im Calls

BAFT will be holding an Ex-Im Bank quarterly update conference call on Monday March 10th at 11:00 am EST. Please contact Patrick Devilbiss at or Stacey Facter at, if you would like to participate.

AML/KYC Initiative

BAFT met with the Wolfsberg Group to discuss coordination of industry efforts to help banks manage KYC and AML challenges. Wolfsberg recently published a paper on updated correspondent banking principles - click here. BAFT launched a working group to develop AML/KYC guidelines for trade finance in November, which will take into account discussions with Wolfsberg and other industry organizations. BAFT’s objective would be to elevate the dialogue on compliance policy to strike a balance between combating financial crime, while minimizing unintended consequences that may add risk to the financial system.

BAFT Engages European Consultant

BAFT hired Carleen Hadley as a consultant supporting the Europe Council and BAFT activities in Europe. Carleen will coordinate Council meetings, committee and project work streams, conference planning and other BAFT activities in the European region, working alongside the Europe Council co-chairs and the BAFT staff in Washington, D.C. Carleen is based in the UK and may be reached at

Registration Ends February 28th for 2014 CDCS Examination

Registration for the 2014 CDCS exam is still open. The deadline to apply for the 2014 examination is February 28, 2014. The exam dates for 2014 are April 11 and April 12. All CDCS candidates registering for the 2014 exam will receive The Guide to Documentary Credits. Developed by BAFT-IFSA, the Institute of Financial Services and industry representatives, it provides the main body of knowledge required for the examination. The study text has been updated to incorporate UCP 600 and other revisions. Candidates will also receive the CDCS® Candidate Study Guide and CDCS® Practice Test. To register, click here. Please contact Lynette Bertelmann at, if you need further assistance.

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Committee and Council Updates

Council Update

Global Trade Industry Council

At the Global Trade Industry Council's (GTIC) January meeting in London, it was announced that Markus Wohlgeschaffen, Head of Global Trade Finance & Services, Global Transaction Banking, UniCredit Group, has been duly elected to serve as Vice Chair of the GTIC.

Transaction Banking Group Leaders

The BAFT Transaction Banking Global Leaders (TBGL) met and discussed progress of advocacy initiatives related to Basel III and regulatory harmonization. The group recognized the value of industry collaboration that has resulted in several positive changes to Basel III as they affect transaction banking, but also identified remaining areas of clarification needed, particularly related to the liquidity framework. Updates to emerging KYC utilities were discussed as well as sustainability initiatives being championed by the Banking Environment Initiative (BEI).

Asia Council

John Wong, Group Head of Transaction Banking at Maybank, was elected to serve as co-chair of the BAFT Asia Council. John has been an active member of the council and will now serve in this leadership capacity alongside Alex Holcomb of Westpac.

North America Council

BAFT’s North America Council met on February 6th. In addition to finalizing governance structure, the Council also re-affirmed its priorities in the areas of regulatory issues, education and training, consultant outreach, and KYC/AML. The Council discussed, and supported, an education initiative that would see additional PDU opportunities for CDCS holders as well as an event hosted by the International Advisory Council planned for April, 2014. Finally, the Council reviewed the upcoming North America conference and briefly discussed planning for the 2015 Global Annual Meeting in North America. The next Council meeting is planned for Saturday, May 3rd at the Hilton Torrey Pines in La Jolla, California.

North America Regional Bank Council

The BAFT North America Regional Bank Council is scheduled to hold its next call on Thursday, March 20th at 2:00pm following a presentation by supplier member Akshay Software International focused on SWIFT automation. The previous meeting covered RMB payments, IACH, FATCA, and BPO. The Council will also be hosting a webinar event on April 29th with RBC’s Gerard Cassidy focused on the impact of Basel III on regional banks, other compliance issues, and the landscape of regional bank mergers and acquisitions.

Trade Committees and Working Groups

Financial Supply Chain Committee

The Financial Supply Chain Committee met and received industry updates from the BPO Committee and discussed questions around SWIFT messages enhancements (messages subject to UR BPO and additional mandatory fields). The committee began an "Ask the Experts" panel section, with the first questions around the purchase of foreign receivables by U.S. banks.

Commercial Letters of Credit Committee

The Commercial Letters of Credit Committee held an ad hoc meeting to review single issue questions and responses, in addition to two case studies, which were to be presented at the Southeast Global Trade Workshop.

Standby Letters of Credit Committee

The Standby Letters of Credit Committee hosted an ad-hoc meeting to review and comment on the latest draft rules for the ICC DOCDEX program. The Committee decided to form a new working group to establish a best practices document to determine if a standby letter of credit is a financial or performance SBLC. Several text samples of standby letters of credit for government entities were reviewed to provide comments to the task force organized by the Institute for International Banking Law and Practice developing these government SBLC industry texts.

Structured Trade/Export Finance Committee

Members of the Structured Trade/Export Finance Committee participated in Ex-Im Bank’s annual competitiveness survey. Quarterly Ex-Im Bank conference call updates will resume this quarter with the first one scheduled for Monday March 10th, at 11:00 am EST.

Trade Compliance Committee

Member banks shared their experiences observing an increase in letters of credit involving the shipment of new vehicles to Asia, by non-manufacturers in violation of U.S. export regulations. The committee raised the idea of forming two working groups - one devoted to reviewing withholding implications of FATCA on various trade products and the other to develop best practices around dealing with export licensing requirements. Compliance requirements for direct and export Collections were reviewed as well as the tools various banks use to identify over/under priced merchandise.

Trade Finance Committee

The Trade Finance Committee addressed an important "Ask the Expert" question regarding the treatment of client confidential information in the context of their trade asset management team's sell down of trade assets discussing both bilateral loans and documentary LCs. The committee discussed the idea of an in-person meeting during the BAFT North American Annual Conference in La Jolla, CA in May.

Trade Loan Documentation Working Group

Members of the Trade Loan Documentation Working Group are finalizing the review of borrower comments on the English Law Master Bank to Bank Trade Loan Agreement, updating the Guidelines document and focusing on the English Law Legal Opinion. BAFT has engaged Moses & Singer to draft the New York Law version of the Loan Agreement.

The London Group

The London Group continues its focus on the building blocks required to attract institutional investors to trade assets.

Oil and Commodity LC Working Group

The Oil and Commodity LC Working Group is meeting regularly via ad hoc meetings to review the Best Practices document in order to finalize as quickly as possible.

Best Practices AML KYC Working Group

The Best Practices AML KYC Working Group is reviewing red flags from multiple industry bodies to ensure that a more comprehensive and global list is available. This will allow them to better update the BAFT Guidelines that will help member institutions update their regulatory compliance programs.

Risk-Purchased Letters of Credit Subcommittee

The subcommittee is in the process of drafting the best practices document with plans to have the first draft out to the committee the first week in March for their review/comments.

Regulatory and Legal Committees

Global Regulatory Affairs and Public Policy Committee

The Liquidity Working Group of the Regulatory Affairs Committee is currently reviewing for comment the Basel Committee proposal on the creation of a Net Stable Funding Ratio (NSFR) and is preparing comments to the European Commission on a final calibration of the EU Liquidity Coverage Ratio.

Payments Committees and Working Groups

Funds Transfer Product Management Committee

The Funds Transfer Product Management Committee discussed Dodd-Frank 165, capital requirements in the U.S., and if non-U.S. financial institutions would have adequate capital to maintain their businesses in the U.S. The committee discussed two papers: the PMPG Foreign Currency Auto Conversion and Market Practice for Sanctions Investigations and asked committee members to submit comments. The committee also discussed the Fed Posting Change (aligning posting to better promote adequate use of liquidity and the Fed’s services) and the response by TCH, and the use of 32/33/71F and MT 103. The committee discussed topics for both the BAFT Annual Meeting and Global Payments Symposium, as well as the formation of the planning committee for the symposium. The payments committees are putting together a discussion group of FATCA subject matter experts to review questions triggered by the BAFT FATCA webinar on Earnings Credit Rate and Rebates and consultant responses.

Payments and Compensation Committee

The Payments and Compensation Committee discussed the upcoming BAFT Annual Meeting May 4-7 in La Jolla, CA. The committee will hold a breakfast meeting on Tuesday, May 6th, and payments committee chairs will present at the Regulatory Compliance Forum on Wednesday, May 7th. The committee also discussed planning the Global Payments Symposium, to be held July 10-11, 2014, at the offices of HSBC in New York. The committee discussed issues related to Dodd-Frank Regulation E (the timing when providers are being notified of changes and are banks giving them information fast enough), LEI (Legal Entity Identifier), which now applies to the securities industry and could potentially move into payments, FATCA (issue of back valuations), and the Federal Reserve Board’s ongoing research on faster payments. The committee responded to an “Ask the Expert” question on payments messages and the BSA Travel Rule.

Information Reporting Committee

The Information Reporting Committee discussed clarifications to the use of field 86 (required to be preceded by field 61; field 86 not required, but it is highly recommended to include additional details), potential educational programs for payments and cash management professionals, and the harmonization of information for MT940 reporting.

If members have any "Ask the Expert" questions for a committee to review, please send them to Melissa Edwards at Names of members and banks will be removed to protect privacy. Please note that all comments are unofficial from a BAFT-IFSA perspective and are only member comments.

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Membership Update

BAFT-IFSA would like to welcome the following new members of the association:

  • Bank Leumi – Tel Aviv, Israel – Financial Institution Member
  • Berkeley Research Group, LLC – Los Angeles, California – Supplier Basic Member

BAFT is conducting our annual membership satisfaction survey. The survey was emailed to all members on Monday, February 24th. The deadline for filling out the Survey is Friday, March 21st, so please take a few minutes to go online and complete the survey. If you did not receive the survey, please click here.

Your feedback is very important as it will help us improve the value of your membership in BAFT.

We would like to grow the BAFT membership in FY2014. Please feel free to send an e-mail to with any recommendations about financial institutions, supplier companies or government agencies that you know and you feel would benefit from BAFT membership. Your suggestions are always welcomed and encouraged, as you are the best source for potential members that you may know.

Affinity Sponsor Program

The BAFT Affinity Sponsor Program provides greater value for our member institutions’ marketing dollars. Sponsors receive year-long brand exposure and recognition in addition to specific marketing opportunities at targeted conferences and events. Opportunities range from various BAFT sponsorship events and webinars to logos and information available to all our members on our website and in newsletters and exclusive stand-alone emails to our members. Learn more about Affinity Sponsors at or contact Kathryn Hoch.

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Recap: Southeast Global Trade Finance Workshop

The Southeast Global Trade Finance Workshop was held February 13-14, 2014, in Tampa, Florida. Attendees enjoyed active participation from a broad range of professionals, strong case studies, and engaging discussions. One participant commented, "I had the pleasure of attending the BAFT conference held in Florida a few weeks ago and wanted to thank you and BAFT in general for offering these valuable training sessions for those in the Trade industry. I found the information so beneficial and sincerely appreciated the opportunity to expand my knowledge, learn what is coming down the pike from BAFT and hear representatives from across the financial industry share their subject matter expertise."

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Education and Training

Webinar Series

SWIFT Integration: Getting the most out of your SWIFT system
Hosted By: Akshay Software International
Thursday, March 20, 2014
1:00pm - 2:00pm EST/6:00pm - 7:00pm GMT

SWIFT systems can be enhanced by automating a variety of processes that interface SWIFT with both human users and with applications. Akshay Software International’s presentation classifies all these processes under the broad heading of SWIFT integration. It discusses the issues involved, the different methods commonly used to achieve automation with the associated costs and complexities, and, finally, an approach to looking at automating integration. Its objective is to help SWIFT users to prioritize and select solutions that will achieve maximum results at the lowest costs.

Register for this webinar

Members – Free
Non-members - $99.00

Previously held BAFT webinars, including “Are You Ready for FATCA”, “Trade Finance Compliance: Challenges and Opportunities in Today’s Global Economy” (November 14, 2013), “Non-Straight Through Payments to Banks in Europe” (August 7, 2013), "Trade Banks Taking a Leadership Position in International Trade" (April 2013), and Basel III Update (March 2013) are posted on the BAFT website in the Past Webinars area. Please note: you will need to log on as a member to access these webinars.

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Global Trade and Finance Update


Conclusion of G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting in Sydney

At the conclusion of the first G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting in Sydney, the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors committed to implement policies to grow the G20 collective GDP by more than 2 per cent above the current trajectory over the next five years. The G20 also had a discussion on the global economy, particularly with regard to monetary policy. and has committed to enhancing cooperation, increasing communication and building resilience in the G20 financial markets and our economies.
Read More

FSB Chair's Letter to G20 Ministers and Governors on Financial Reforms

The Financial Stability Board's letter reviews what remains to complete the job, and then outlines the characteristics of financial supervision and regulation needed to realize fully the benefits of an open, integrated global financial system. The letter makes two main points: First, if we remain focused and ambitious, we can complete the remaining core elements of the reforms during the Australian G20 Presidency. Second, the G20's approach beyond the Brisbane Summit will determine the openness of the global financial system and consequently the strength and sustainability of global growth.
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WTO Check on Global Trade: Growth Recovering But Restrictions on the Rise

Director-General Roberto Azevêdo, in presenting his first global trade-monitoring report to WTO members on February 17, 2014, said that trade growth projections for this year are “much improved, hovering somewhere between 4.0% and 4.5%.” However, he said “407 new restrictive measures were reported during the review period,” affecting 1.3 % of world merchandise imports—valued at $240 billion.
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Outcomes from the Meeting of the FATF Plenary

Under the Russian Presidency, the second FATF Plenary meeting of FATF-XXV was held on February 12-14, 2014 in Paris. Among the main AML/CFT issues addressed were the identification of jurisdictions that may pose a risk to the international financial system, data protection issues, and implications of virtual currency.
Read More

As part of its on-going review of compliance with the AML/CFT standards, the FATF has identified the jurisdictions which have strategic AML/CFT deficiencies for which they have developed an action plan with the FATF. While the situations differ among each jurisdiction, each jurisdiction has provided a written high-level political commitment to address the identified deficiencies.
Read More

In order to protect the international financial system from money laundering and financing of terrorism (ML/FT) risks and to encourage greater compliance with the AML/CFT standards, the FATF identified jurisdictions that have strategic deficiencies.
Read More

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Europe and Central Asia

The WTO Bali Package and the EBRD Region

The Bali Package is intended as a first stepping stone towards the completion of the Doha Round that covers over 20 areas of trade, also known as the Doha Development Agenda (DDA). The Doha negotiations ran into many disagreements between the US, the EU and the developing economies (notably China and India). The Bali Package carved from the Doha Round the “least common denominator” acceptable to all countries. All 26 WTO members in the EBRD region signed up to the Bali Package. Among the six observer countries, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Serbia are close to finalizing their accessions and will automatically sign up to the Bali Package upon joining the WTO.
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EU Trade Chief Following EU-U.S. Trade Deal Stock Taking: "Good progress, time to go the extra mile"

EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht met United States Trade Representative Ambassador Michael Froman in Washington D.C. to review progress on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations that were launched in July 2013. Following two days of meetings, the EU Trade Commissioner said that the negotiations had made good progress and now needed to step up a gear. Both sides have explored ways to remove unnecessary trade barriers between the EU and the U.S. markets without lowering the protection of people's health, safety, rights at work, privacy and financial security, and the environment.
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Economic Affairs Committee Backs Plan to Update Online Payment Rules

Rules governing online payments by electronic transfer need an EU-wide update to improve security, reduce processing fees and widen consumer choice, said Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee MEPs endorsing draft legislation to this end. The new rules would also encourage competition to provide payment services and innovative payment methods.
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Eurostat Releases First Estimate for 2013: Euro Are International Trade in Goods Surplus is 153.8 Billion Euro, 49.9 Billion urn Surplus for EU28

During 2013, euro area trade in goods recorded a surplus of 153.8 billion euro, compared with +79.7 billion in 2012. The EU28 recorded a surplus of 49.9 billion in 2013, compared with a deficit of 115.0 billion in 2012. The first estimate for the December 2013 euro area (EA17) trade in goods balance with the rest of the world gave a 13.9 billion euro surplus, compared with +9.8 billion in December 2012. The November 2013 balance was +17.0 billion, compared with +12.5 billion in November 2012. These data are released by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.
Read More

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Asia, Africa, and the Middle East

APEC to Boost Global Agreement on Trade Facilitation

APEC’s role in advancing the Agreement on Trade Facilitation, a component of the World Trade Organization Bali Package, was in the spotlight during a gathering of regional and global customs officials in Ningbo, China on February 15-28. APEC member economies, which were instrumental in concluding a breakthrough global agreement on the simplification of customs procedures, are intent on ensuring that its implementation is successful and the benefits to cross-border trade materialize.
Read More

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The Americas

IRS Releases Final FATCA Regulations

On February 20, 2014, the IRS published final FATCA regulations. The proposed and temporary regulations released make additions and clarifications to previously issued FATCA regulations and provide guidance to coordinate FATCA rules with pre-existing due diligence, reporting and withholding requirements under other provisions of the Tax Code.
Read More.

Agencies Permit Certain Banking Organizations to Begin Using Advanced Approaches Framework to Determine Risk-Based Capital Requirements

Under the agencies' "Advanced Approaches" capital framework, which implements standards developed by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, firms must meet specific risk measurement and management criteria when calculating their risk-based capital requirements. The framework applies to large, internationally active banking organizations--generally those with at least $250 billion in total consolidated assets or at least $10 billion in total on-balance sheet foreign exposure--and includes the depository institution subsidiaries of those firms.
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Federal Reserve Board Approves Final Rule on Strengthening Supervision and Regulation of Large U.S. Bank Holding Companies and Foreign Banking Organizations

The Fed published a final rule on February 18, 2014 that establishes a number of enhanced prudential standards for large U.S. bank holding companies and foreign banking organizations to help increase the resiliency of their operations. These standards include liquidity, risk management, and capital. It also requires a foreign banking organization with a significant U.S. presence to establish an intermediate holding company over its U.S. subsidiaries, which will facilitate consistent supervision and regulation of the U.S. operations of the foreign bank. The final rule was required by section 165 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.
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Mutual Evaluation of the Canada: FATF 6th Follow-up Report

In February 2014, the FATF recognized that Canada had made significant progress in addressing the deficiencies identified in the 2008 mutual evaluation report and could be removed from the regular follow-up process. The decision by the FATF to remove a country from the regular follow-up process is based on procedures agreed in October 2009.
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