In its final seminar of the year, the Guernsey Association of
Compliance Officers (GACO) welcomed the newly-appointed Principal
Ombudsman and Chief Executive of Channel Islands Financial
Ombudsman (CIFO), Douglas Melville, to discuss his role and how the
organisation will interact with financial service businesses in
GACO chairman and Carey Olsen partner, Mark Dunster, said he was
keen for Mr Melville to speak to an audience of compliance officers
as they were involved in regulation and risk and were most likely
to have considerable interaction with CIFO.
During the seminar Mr Melville outlined the importance of
building a relationship with industry to ensure a meaningful
Mr Melville discussed the issues the ombudsman office was facing
including difficult jurisdictional issues related to financial
He also addressed the extent to which the ombudsman could become
a guide to future trends and issues by using patterns of complaints
to identify common problems. He hoped that by giving early
warning on certain trends to industry associations such as
the Guernsey Financial Services Commission, problems would be
Advocate Dunster said: "It is interesting to see the
pragmatic way that the ombudsman is proposing to conduct office. It
is not just seen as being there to investigate individual
complaints against financial services firms (many of which the
members of GACO represent) but also to look at wider public policy
considerations to ensure that problems for consumers are reduced to
a minimum in the long term.
"The seminar gave compliance officers the opportunity
to interact with the ombudsman in a more informal setting and it
also created a good degree of 'buy-in' from regulated
"This should ensure a better working relationship between
parties, which is crucial to the success of the Ombudsman
The Channel Islands Financial Ombudsman opened for business on
16 November. For more information please visit https://www.ci-fo.org/.
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