John Mamo takes over at Malta Financial Services Authority

John Mamo’s appointment has now been officialised • He takes over from Joe Bannister who has served as the chief financial services regulator for almost two decades

Professor John Mamo has been formally appointed chairman of the Malta Financial Services Authority
Professor John Mamo has been formally appointed chairman of the Malta Financial Services Authority

Professor John Mamo has officially been appointed to head the financial services regulator after receiving a positive recommendation from Parliament’s public appointments committee.

The government formally announced Mamo’s appointment on Monday afternoon. He takes over at a critical juncture for the MFSA, which came under intense scrutiny over its handling of the Pilatus Bank licence after the owner was arrested in the US a few weeks ago.

Mamo’s appointment was backed by the Opposition. During his hearing in Parliament, Mamo accused Deutsche Bank of being a well-known “money-laundering channel”.

He was answering questions by MPs on the threat posed by tax harmonisation to Malta’s financial services.

Mamo pointed out that the UK’s departure from the European Union meant Malta had lost a valuable ally, but insisted that Malta needed to stand its ground in the face of pressure by other European member states.

“We need to make it clear that we are keeping a clean house but as I am saying, we also don’t need to be masochistic and do more than those attacking us are doing,” Mamo said, singling out Germany as one of the countries putting pressure on Malta.

Two new governors

The government also announced the appointment of Andre Psaila and Mario Borg as new governors at the MFSA.

The statement said the appointment of two governors was in line with the dynamic nature of the financial services sector and government’s policy to encourage modern sectors such as fintech, virtual currencies and related services.

Psaila has worked at the Central Bank of Malta in the Investment Department for the past 10 years, and is a member of the EU Sovereign Debt Markets committee.

Borg has headed the Macroeconomic Forecast Unit within the Economic Policy Department and was an economic advisor at the Finance Ministry for many years.

He was recently the director of economics and business statistics within the National Statistics Office and was a policy advisor on the regulation of DLT, fintech, and financial services.

Financial Service Parliamentary Secretary Silvio Schembri conveyed his well-wishes to the appointees.

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