Wednesday, 8th November 2023

Conference Hall, Level 3 - MFSA Premises

This event has already passed and registrations are closed.


The business of banking is fundamentally changing. The exogenous environment in which banks operate is developing rapidly, leading banks to be faced with uncertainty in relation to their sustainability, should they fail to adapt their business models and controls. In turn, this dynamic environment is leading to an increase in the breadth and depth of regulation. This increased complexity contributes to uncertainty, but also helps in making banks more resilient to the challenges ahead.

This Conference seeks to bring together distinguished speakers among Maltese and Euro Area regulators and the banking industry in Malta, to discuss trends in the banking sphere and in banking supervision. To this end, the Conference will address three main banking and supervisory trends:

  • ESG Risk Management and Sustainable Finance in Banking
  • Regulating Digital Finance in Banking; and
  • AML/CFT Developments and the Supervisory Approach

The aim of the Conference is to give an update of banking regulation to the industry, enhance transparency around the MFSA’s expectations from banks and encourage discussion of and preparedness to upcoming regulations.

Who Should Attend

An invitation has been sent to Banks' Chairpersons, CEOs, CROs, and Compliance Officers, as well as advisory firms.



08:30H Registration & Welcome Coffee
09:05H Opening Statement

Kenneth Farrugia - Chief Executive Officer, MFSA

09:15H Keynote: Trends in Banking Supervision

Christopher Buttigieg - Chief Officer Supervision, MFSA

09:45H Keynote: ESG Risk Management in Banking - Practical Experience and Advice from the EBA

François-Louis Michaud - Executive Director, European Banking Authority

10:15H Panel Discussion: Sustainable Finance in the Field of Banking

Catherine Galea - Head of Banking Supervision, MFSA (Moderator)
Anne Lécuyer - Deputy Director, Directorate General Specialised Institutions & LSIs, ECB
Giorgio Donato - Director Banking Supervision, Banca d'Italia
François-Louis Michaud - Executive Director, European Banking Authority
Anabel Armeni Cauchi - Deputy Head, Banking Supervision, MFSA

11:00H Coffee Break
11:15H Keynote: Regulating Digital Finance in Banking

Anne Lécuyer - Deputy Director, Directorate General Specialised Institutions & LSIs, ECB

11:45H Panel Discussion: Digitalisation of Banking Services, Cybersecurity and Operational Resilience

Anabel Armeni Cauchi - Deputy Head, Banking Supervision, MFSA (Moderator)
Rachel Gauci - Deputy Head, FinTech Supervision, MFSA
Karol Gabarretta - Secretary General, Malta Bankers' Association
Alan Decelis - Head of Supervisory ICT Risk and Cybersecurity, MFSA
Anne Lécuyer - Deputy Director, Directorate General Specialised Institutions & LSIs, ECB

12:30H Lunch Break
13:30H Keynote: AML/CFT Recent Regulatory Developments and Preparation for Implementation

Chiara Bacci - Team Leader for Enforcement of the EU AML/CFT Policy, Financial Crime Unit, DG FISMA, European Commission

14:00H Panel Discussion: AML/CFT Developments and the Supervisory Approach

Alfred Zammit - Acting Director, FIAU (Moderator)
Jonathan Phyall - Head of Legal Affairs Section, FIAU
Matthew Scicluna - Head of Financial Crime Compliance, MFSA
Marcel Cassar - Chairman, Malta Bankers' Association
Richard Walker - Vice Chairman, MONEYVAL

14:45H Keynote: AML Enforcement

Elena Tabone - Head of Enforcement, FIAU

15:15H The Supervision of Banks' Conduct of Business

Sarah Pulis - Head of Conduct Supervision, MFSA

15:45H Closing Remarks

Jesmond Gatt - Chairman, MFSA


The Authority encourages interested participants to register by filling in the form below by not later than Sunday 5 November 2023.

The conference is by invitation only. Registration is on a first come, first served basis.


Chairman, MFSA

Jesmond Gatt

Jesmond Gatt was appointed as Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Malta Financial Services Authority in 2023. Mr Gatt joined the Central Bank of Malta in 1984, graduating in Mathematics and Computing at the University of Malta in 1995. During his career at the Bank, which spans over 37 years, he has worked on all major IT projects holding the position of Chief Officer responsible for retail banking services, management of currency and the regulation of payment systems and infrastructures. He formed part of the core financial sector team which oversaw the changeover to the Euro in Malta in 2008. Since Malta became part of the European Union he has been a member of a number of Euro system and European Commission committees working on payments systems and the management of euro notes and coins. He has also participated in a number of European Commission initiatives drawing up payment systems regulations. Since 2016 he has been sitting on the Board of the FIAU, acting as Chairman to the Board from 2020. In December of 2022 he has taken up the role of Chief Executive Officer at the Malta Government Investments.

Chief Executive Officer, MFSA

Kenneth Farrugia

Kenneth Farrugia, CEO of the MFSA, holds a Bachelor of Accountancy (Hons), an MA in Business Ethics, and is a Certified Public Accountant and a fellow member of the Malta Institute of Accountants (MIA). Throughout his career, Mr Farrugia held audit positions both within private audit firms and the public sector. Prior to joining the MFSA, Mr Farrugia was the Director of the FIAU, Malta’s financial intelligence and single AML/CFT Supervisor and Enforcement Unit in Malta, for six years until April 2023. During his tenure he implemented major policy, system and procedural reforms within the various sections of the FIAU, including intelligence analysis, AML/CFT supervisory and enforcement initiatives, and legal and international relation areas. Additionally, Mr Farrugia spearheaded the setting up of new teams within the Unit such as the cash limitation supervisory team, the central bank account registry and data analytics team, as well as the strategy, policy and quality assurance teams to cater for new responsibilities assigned to the FIAU by law, and also to enhance the overall governance structure of the Unit. He represented the FIAU in international fora, including the EBA AMLC, FIU Platform and EGMONT, amongst others, and participated in various AML/CFT high-level committees. For nine years up to 2017, he was engaged within the Government of Malta’s Internal Audit and Investigations Department (IAID) where he held various roles, including that of Director General. Mr Farrugia provided support to the Internal Audit & Investigations Board (IAIB) in drafting policies and procedures, implementing and managing the necessary change programmes and served as Secretary to that Board. He also participated in various meetings, seminars and conferences organised by the European Commission in the fields of auditing and financial investigations. Mr Farrugia is currently also the Chairman of the FIAU.

Chief Officer Supervision, MFSA

Christopher Buttigieg

Dr Christopher P. Buttigieg was appointed as Chief Officer Supervision in March 2020 following his appointment as Chief Officer Strategy, Policy and Innovation in 2019. During his tenure as Head of Securities and Markets Supervision before 2019, which stretched over four years, Dr Buttigieg was responsible for work in the field of policy, regulation and supervision of securities, markets and FinTech. He joined the Authority in 2000 as Manager in the Investment Services Unit and has gained professional experience in various areas of financial regulation, supervision, the investigation of market misconduct and the enforcement of sanctions. Dr Buttigieg was responsible for implementing various pieces of EU legislation in the field of securities and markets and has led different regulatory and supervisory teams within the Authority. He sits on the Authority’s Supervisory Council and represents the MFSA at various European Fora on financial regulation and supervision. He is the MFSA’s alternate member on the ESMA Board of Supervisors and is the Chair of the ESMA Data Standing Committee. Dr Buttigieg is a lecturer in the Banking and Finance Department of the University of Malta and has published various papers on financial regulation and supervision in academic and professional journals. For a period of two years, up to April 2015, Dr Buttigieg was a director on the board of the Malta Resources Authority, Malta’s energy regulator. In 2015, the President of Malta appointed Dr Buttigieg as a member on the board of the Fund for Voluntary Organisations. Dr Buttigieg is also a member of the Board of Trustees of the Academy of European Law (Trier).

Head, Conduct Supervision, MFSA

Sarah Pulis

Sarah Pulis holds the position of Head within the Conduct Supervision function at the MFSA. Sarah has twenty years of experience in the regulation and supervision of financial services, namely investment firms, collective investment schemes, company services providers, insurance undertakings and insurance intermediaries. During her career, she has represented the Authority on various committees with ESMA and EIOPA. Sarah read law at the University of Malta and graduated as a Notary Public and Doctor of Laws in 1996 and 1999 respectively. She also obtained a Master of Laws in European Union Law from the University of Leicester in 2006.

Head, Supervisory ICT Risk & Cybersecurity, MFSA

Alan Decelis

Alan Decelis was appointed Head of Supervisory ICT Risk and Cybersecurity in July 2021. Alan brings over twenty years of experience in Information and Communications Technology (ICT), mainly with the Malta Information Technology Agency (MITA) including ten years in information security. He is a member of the National Cybersecurity Strategy Steering Committee and sits in various groups within the European System of Financial Supervision and the EU Agency for Cybersecurity. He has direct industry experience in ICT operations and service management, quality and security management systems, public key infrastructures, identity and machine-readable travel documents, and electronic signatures. He is also experienced in cyber incident management, forensic investigations, security testing, threat intelligence, and security operations centres. Alan pursued undergraduate studies in Electronics Engineering, Economics, Information Systems and Management and postgraduate studies in Information Security specialising in Security Testing and Digital Forensics. He is also GIAC, CISA, CIPP/E, CIPM, ITIL, and ISO/IEC 27001 certified.

Head, Banking Supervision, MFSA

Catherine Galea

Catherine Galea is the MFSA’s Head of Banking Supervision. She commenced her career with the Central Bank of Malta in 1990 before joining the MFSA in 2002 in order to pursue her career within Banking Supervision and in 2010 was assigned the responsibility of setting up the banking section within the Authorisations function. Later, Catherine was appointed as Head of Banking Supervision and was also the Malta member within the SSM Supervisory Board. From 2020 till 2023, Catherine was subsequently entrusted with setting up and heading the Supervisory Quality Assurance function within the MFSA. Throughout her career, Catherine was also responsible for transposing and implementing various pieces of EU legislation in the field of banking supervision and has led various supervisory teams and working groups within the Authority. She actively participates and represents the MFSA in various international fora. Furthermore, she is a frequent lecturer at local educational institutions on various regulatory issues, including the Capital Requirements Regulation/Directive and Risk Management. Catherine is an Associate of the Chartered Institute of Bankers (ACIB) and holds an MSc degree in Finance from the University of Leicester (UK).

Head, Financial Crime Compliance, MFSA

Matthew Scicluna

Matthew Scicluna joined the MFSA in 2010, after a 2-year stint with a local bank, and has extensive experience in financial services regulation, risk management, supervision, focusing on AML/CFT and combatting financial crime. At the MFSA, he has held various positions within the Securities and Markets Supervision function, the Conduct Supervisory function and the Enforcement (AML/CFT section) function. Throughout his career, Matthew has been involved in a number of projects and assignments and worked on several major investigations related to ML and TF, currently representing the MFSA in various evaluations conducted by international bodies. He represented the MFSA within various Committees of the European Supervisory Authorities and is currently involved in a number of European network groups related to financial crime compliance. He also sits on the National Coordination Committee. He also attends sessions of the recently established Standing Committee on AML/CFT, which is a permanent internal committee of the EBA. Matthew holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Hons), Banking and Finance and the Master of Arts in Financial Services, from the University of Malta. He continued to specialise in financial services, completing an International Diploma in Anti-Money Laundering and an International Diploma in Financial Crime Prevention, both from the University of Manchester. He also possesses Crypto Currency Investigator accreditation from the Blockchain Intelligence Group.

Deputy Head, Banking Supervision, MFSA

Anabel Armeni Cauchi

Anabel Armeni Cauchi is a Deputy Head in the MFSA's Banking Supervision Department. She joined the MFSA in January 2019 and is responsible for leading the team which directly supervises LSIs in Malta as well as strategic stakeholder management locally and with the European Central Bank and the European Banking Authority. She joined the MFSA after more than 11 years in the Financial Stability Department of the Central Bank of Malta, where she was involved in the macro-prudential supervision of banks, insurance companies and investment funds. She has represented the Central Bank and the MFSA in various ECB Working Groups and local regulatory forums. She holds a Masters of Science degree in Economics from the University of Malta.

Executive Director, EBA

François-Louis Michaud

François-Louis Michaud is the Executive Director of the European Banking Authority. He took office on 1 September 2020 after having been confirmed by the European Parliament. Since March 2014, he had been a Deputy Director General at the European Central Bank, with responsibilities in the Single Supervisory Mechanism (SSM) for horizontal and specialised topics first, then for the supervision of some of the largest European banks. Previously, he was a Deputy Director at France’s Autorité de Contrôle Prudentiel et de Résolution, and had been closely involved in the preparations for the SSM since 2012. At the Bank for International Settlements between 2005 and 2009, he worked on the global financial system’s vulnerabilities and served as the Secretary to the Markets Committee, a forum for central banks’ market operations officials. He started his career at Banque de France in 1996, where he held various roles in banking supervision, policy and financial stability, before being seconded to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (2004-05). He graduated in Economics, Finance, and Philosophy.

Deputy Director, Directorate General Specialised Institutions & LSIs, ECB

Anne Lécuyer

Anne Lécuyer is Deputy Director General of DG Specialised Institutions and LSIs within the Single Supervisory Mechanism of the European Central Bank (ECB). The Directorate General is in charge of supervising around 50 Significant Institutions and oversees the supervision by National Competent Authorities of Less Significant Institutions. Anne joined the ECB in 2014, at the start of the Single Supervisory Mechanism as a Head of Division leading supervisory teams of systemic or universal banks. Before she was head of the Large Banks Division in Banque de France - Autorité de Contrôle Prudentiel et de Résolution (ACPR) and also held several roles in the Banking Commission of the Bank of France related to macro-prudential matters, supervisory policy, banking regulation and line supervision. She has also worked for the French Ministry of Finance and Banca d’Italia. Anne holds Master degrees in Political Science and Economics from Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris.

Director, Banking Supervision, Banca d'Italia

Giorgio Donato

He was born on 28 February 1963 in Rome, where he graduated in Economics in 1986 from the Libera Università Internazionale degli Studi Sociali (LUISS), with honours and a recommendation for the publication of his dissertation on economic and financial policy. After doing some research work, he was hired by the Bank of Italy in August 1988 at the Milan branch, where he carried out on- and offsite supervision activities. In 1993, he was assigned to the Banking and Financial Supervision Area at the Bank's head office in Rome, in the Banking Supervision Directorate, where he worked in: the offsite supervision of the main banks in the system; crisis management for southern Italian banking groups, the impacts on the financial system of the crisis of some industrial groups and the consolidation and restructuring of the Italian banking industry. He took part in the European integration process, helping to draw up the framework for cooperation with the other European Union supervisory authorities. In this regard, he represented the Bank of Italy in international working groups at the European Central Bank, the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, the European Banking Authority and the European Commission. From 2005 to 2009, he was Acting Head of the Banking Groups Division I, where he coordinated supervisory activities at Italy's leading banks. In the same period, he reorganized and coordinated the work of the supervisory college of a prominent banking group with a significant international footprint, in which EU and non-EU supervisory authorities participate. From 2010 to 2013, he was Head of the Banking Groups Division V, in charge of supervising subsidiaries of foreign banks and branches of foreign credit institutions in Italy, and medium-sized national banks. In 2014, he was a member of a project team set up in the Bank of Italy to coordinate the Comprehensive Assessment exercise for significant banks and coordinated the National Quality Assurance and Technical Assistance Team. In the same year, he became Head of the Banking Groups Division IV in the Banking Supervision 1 Directorate, and also took on the role of national coordinator for three of the top Joint Supervisory Teams for European banks with a significant market presence in Italy. In 2015, he was entrusted with the task of supporting the Head and the Acting Head of the Directorate in their managerial role of coordinating processes and divisions. In 2018, he was appointed Deputy Head of the Banking Supervision 1 Directorate. He has chaired selection committees for hiring graduates in the Bank of Italy and represents the Bank in its relations with the institutions and in international committees and working groups. Given his work interests, he has collaborated in drawing up supervisory guidelines, taken part in projects for international technical cooperation, and set up training and external communication schemes, speaking at seminars and conferences. He has been Head of the Banking Supervision 1 Directorate since 25 October 2021.

Secretary General, MBA

Karol Gabarretta

Karol Gabarretta is the Secretary General of the Malta Bankers’ Association as from the 23 July 2018. Mr Gabarretta represents the Association on various local bodies, such as the Management Committee of the Deposit Compensation Scheme, the Board of Governors of FinanceMalta and the Malta Financial Services Advisory Council. He also sits on the Executive Committee of the European Banking Federation (EBF). He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics (B. Comm. Econ.) and a post-graduate degree in Financial Services (M.A. Fin. Serv.) from the University of Malta. Mr Gabarretta was employed by the Central Bank of Malta (1979 - 2001) and subsequently by the MFSA (2002 - 2018) and is a former member of the ECB’s Supervisory Board. Mr Gabarretta also served as Chair of the Committee of European Banking Supervisors (CEBS) Task Force on Supervisory Disclosure (TFSD) and provided assistance within the EU Commission’s TAIEX program as an Expert on Banking Provisions of Financial Services Acquis.

Acting Director, FIAU

Alfred Zammit

Alfred Zammit, is currently the Acting Director of the FIAU. Mr Zammit joined the Unit in 2010. Mr Zammit provides strategic direction to the various sections of the Unit, including the section responsible for intelligence analysis, the AML/CFT supervisory and enforcement teams of the FIAU, and legal and international relations section. Mr Zammit regularly participates in AML/CFT international workshops and conferences, and represents the FIAU in international fora, such as the meetings of the Egmont Group of FIUs, the EU FIU Platform and Moneyval, among others. He has participated in various AML/CFT training sessions, both locally and internationally, and regularly contributes in formulating AML/CFT guidance documents, legal amendments and the transposition of EU AML/CFT directives. Mr Zammit also participates in the various internal committees, including the Compliance Monitoring Committee, which reviews compliance cases and possible breaches by subject persons of the pertinent legislation. In 2005, Mr Zammit graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce (Hons) in Management and Economics from the University of Malta. After graduating, he joined the Central Bank of Malta and was responsible for the analysis and assessment of data of institutions operating in the bank and non-bank financial sectors as part of the Central Bank’s process assessing the economy’s financial stability. Prior to joining the FIAU, Mr Zammit also worked for several years within the private sector in the provision of company services.

Head, Enforcement, FIAU

Elena Tabone

Elena Tabone, joined the FIAU in 2015 as a Compliance Officer. Throughout the years, she has been actively involved in the supervision of financial institutions and DNFBPs from an AML/CFT perspective. She has contributed extensively to the enhancement of the FIAU’s supervisory framework, ensuring its continuous development in line with European and international requirements, as well as to cater more effectively for the ML/FT risks arising from the sectors falling within the FIAU’s supervisory remit. Throughout her roles at the FIAU Ms Tabone was also responsible for the implementation of the Compliance and Supervision Platform for Assessing Risk System (CASPAR) and for risk assessing subject persons. Ms Tabone currently heads the Enforcement Section of the FIAU. The Enforcement Section is responsible for the proper application of administrative measures imposed on subject persons by the FIAU’s Compliance Monitoring Committee and for following up on remedial action plans presented by subject persons to ensure compliance with the AML/CFT legislative provisions. Ms Tabone obtained a Bachelor of Commerce (Hons) degree in Insurance and Finance from the University of Malta in 2014 and attained the CAMS qualification in 2020. Prior to joining the FIAU, she worked as a Commercial Claims Handler with a leading Maltese insurance broker.

Head, Legal Affairs, FIAU

Jonathan Phyall

Jonathan Phyall is the current Head of the FIAU’s Legal Affairs Section. He has been involved in the drafting of both local legislation in the area of AML/CFT, including as part of transposition exercises, and of guidance addressed to subject persons on how AML/CFT requirements are to be applied. Jonathan regularly attends for, and participates in, meetings of the Egmont Group of FIUs, the FIU-Platform, the Expert Group on Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing and of the European Banking Authority’s Anti-Money Laundering Standing Committee. In addition, he has participated in a number of Working Parties at Council level focusing on European AML/CFT legislation, including a number of Working Parties focusing on the AML Package. Jonathan also forms part of the Maltese delegation attending for the Conference of the Parties of the Warsaw Convention. He is also a MONEYVAL assessor. A lawyer by profession, prior to joining the FIAU, Jonathan held a number of compliance and AML/CFT-related positions with local financial institutions.

Chairman, Malta Bankers' Association

Marcel Cassar

Marcel Cassar is CEO of APS Bank plc since 2016. His career started in 1987 with Price Waterhouse, followed by successively senior executive positions at MIBA/MFSC (now MFSA), Lombard Bank Malta plc and FIMBank plc. He presently chairs the Malta Bankers’ Association and sits on the board of the European Banking Federation. Marcel is a CPA, fellow of the Malta Institute of Accountants and holds an MBA in Bank Financial Management jointly from the University of Wales and Manchester Business School (1995). He has lectured, supervised and examined at both FEMA and the MA Financial Services course, University of Malta.

Deputy Head, FinTech Supervision, MFSA

Rachel Gauci

Rachel is an advocate by profession and her expertise is in financial services regulation, particularly pertaining to payment services and e-money. After 10 years of experience working for financial institutions in a legal and regulatory compliance capacity and at an executive level, Rachel joined the MFSA where she was able to capitalise on this knowledge and experience in her current role with the Regulator. Rachel continues to follow the progress of payment services regulation in the European Union, also in particular, in relation to instant payments, open banking, and the digital finance package. She contributed to the publication of ‘The PAYTECH Book’, on 18 February 2020, wherein her views were shared on open banking in her article entitled ‘Is Europe a Good Example of Open Banking?’. Rachel obtained her university degree as a Doctor of Laws from the University of Malta in 2014 following the submission of a doctoral thesis in fulfilment thereof, entitled ‘A Critical Analysis of The Payment Services Directive and its Practical Application’.

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