On August 28, the National Assembly’s Economy and Finance Committee passed the bill elevating the Department, or Intendancy, of Non-Financial Subject Supervision and Regulation to the rank of Superintendency. The measure, which was passed in the first debate, seeks to bolster the regulation of non-financial subjects in order to comply with international regulatory standards. The bill will now be debated on the floor of the National Assembly and is expected to be approved in the medium term.
The bill was passed despite a request issued by the Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture of Panama (CCIAP) for a review process to allow the text to be submitted to the private sector for consultation. The CCIAP’s view is that the regulation will impact a large number of sectors which should have the opportunity to express themselves, such as free trade zones and foreign trade, as well as other activities including automobile sales, the purchase of metals and precious stones, pawn shops, transport of valuables and mail systems.
The initiative aims to maintain standards for compliance and adhere to international norms preventing money-laundering, terrorism financing and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, in addition to applying best practices to enable the country to achieve its objectives of transparency and improved efficiency.