Ensuring a safe, stable and fair financial system

Being recognised by PMR Africa as the best for the past nine years.

18 June 2021 | People

Michelline Nawatises





The Namibia Financial Institutions Supervisory Authority (Namfisa) exists to supervise financial institutions and financial services, and to advise the minister of finance on matters relating to financial institutions and financial services in terms of the NAMFISA regulatory framework.

Namfisa was established in November 2001 pursuant to the Namibia Financial Institutions Supervisory Authority Act, 2001 (No. 3 of 2001).

The vision is to have a safe, stable and fair financial system contributing to the economic development of Namibia in which consumers are protected with the mission to effectively regulate and supervise financial institutions and give sound advice to the minister of finance.

Namfisa’s staff complement as at 31 March 2020 stood at 172 and is comprised of highly skilled professional people. Namfisa has an established high performing culture with emphasis on service excellence to our stakeholders and customers. The culture is defined by the organisational values that every employee as brand ambassadors commit to. Namfisa is a transparent regulator that bases the culture on the three key strategic themes of operational efficiency, stakeholder engagement and transformation.

Why regulate the non-bank financial sector?

The financial sector requires regulation for the purpose of consumer and industry protection. The extent and form of the regulation will vary between different financial institutions, stage of development of the financial sector and jurisdictions. The principal aims of regulation of the financial sector are to:

· Correct market inefficiencies and promote efficient and orderly markets in financial services;

· Protect consumers of financial services; and

· Maintain confidence in the financial system.

The non-banking financial sector consist of pension funds, friendly societies, microlenders, money lenders, asset management companies, unlisted investment managers, special purpose vehicles, collective investment schemes, linked investment service providers, stock exchange, medical aid funds, short-term insurance companies, long-term insurance companies, brokers and agents.

Values of Namfisa

· Teamwork

· Performance excellence

· Service excellence

· Accountability

· Integrity

· Agility



Accomplishments

Namfisa is entering into the final year of its five-year strategy. The authority recognises and celebrates the following key milestones achieved during the reporting period:

· Engagement with their stakeholders and customers on an annual basis;

· The enrolment of employees in respect of regulatory certification;

· The approval of the Treating Customers Fairly Framework;

· The approval of the consumer credit policy by Financial Inclusion Advisory Body and submitted thereof to minister of finance for consideration;

· Namfisa’s annual report being recognised by PMR Africa as the best for the past nine years; and

· Namfisa’s significant investment in corporate social responsibility.

Achievement

Their greatest achievement to date is the imminent promulgation of the Namfisa and Financial Institutions Markets (FIM) Bill. These two pieces of legislations once enforced aim to strengthen Namfisa’s enforcement powers and to consolidate and harmonise the laws regulating financial institutions, financial intermediaries and financial markets in Namibia.

Particularly the FIM Bill seeks to foster the following objectives:

· The financial soundness of financial institutions and financial intermediaries;

· The stability of the financial institutions and markets sector;

· The highest standards of conduct of business by financial institutions and financial intermediaries;

· The fairness, efficiency and orderliness of the financial institutions and markets sector;

· The protection of consumers of financial services;

· The promotion of public awareness and understanding of financial institutions and financial intermediaries; and

· The reduction and deterrence of financial crime.

Fast-forward to the next three to five years

Over the next three to five years, Namfisa will continue to enhance the effective regulation and supervision the non-banking financial sector and give sound advice to the minister of finance with regard to this sector. They want to ensure a safe, stable and fair financial system contributing to the economic development of Namibia in which consumers of financial services are protected.

Namfisa remains committed in working towards its set objectives to effectively transform the financial sector for the benefit of the consumers and the industries we serve and ultimately contribute to the Namibian economy.

Namfisa-sponsored activities

Namfisa invests significantly in employee engagement through its established Sports Club and Social Club as well as team building initiatives organisation wide. They further invest in training and developing employees on an annual basis. Namfisa believes that happy employees result in happy customers and therefore their significant investment in employee engagement and learning and development.

Measuring success

Namfisa has an established performance appraisal process to assess the authority’s and the board’s performance and effectiveness on an annual basis. the authority’s head of governance, risk and compliance facilitates the self-appraisals by the board, which are followed by a board committee peer review mechanism and an evaluation of whether the key performance areas set in the governance agreement with the minister of finance have been duly met.

Giving back to the community

Namfisa, as a responsible corporate citizen, needs to play a meaningful role in society and act in a socially responsible manner. Joanette Eises, who is the corporate communications practitioner, said that it does so by funding projects and activities that positively contribute to national development in Namibia. “All identified corporate social responsibility and investment (CSRI) activities create the highest level of impact for the institution’s brand,” she says. For this reason, the contributions also need to be sustainable. Furthermore, all employees are encouraged to actively participate in projects through identifying needy causes or volunteering their time towards such causes.

Namfisa CSRI operations are enshrined in its institutional ethos by way of a CSRI policy with specific focus on initiatives on education, sports arts and culture and information communication and technology initiatives. Since its establishment, the committee has produced a business plan of initiatives for Namfisa to support under its CSRI policy.

Namfisa has over the years supported institutions to the value of N$460 000 to the following beneficiaries and institutions:

· The One Economy Foundation

· Twaloloka informal settlement fire victims

· The Orange Babies Namibia Foundation

· OmniCare Primary Health care.

· Hindjou Gardening Project

· Unam readiness programme

· Covid-19 National Disaster Recovery Fund

· World Aids Day commemoration 2020

Namfisa has internship agreements with the University of Namibia (Unam) and the Namibia University of Science and Technology (Nust) to enhance Namibia’s skills base, especially within the financial services industry. These agreements aim to ensure that practical learning is integrated into academic training. Thus, university students are placed in an internship programme at Namfisa for a specified period to gain practical experience in the work place.

For more information about Namfisa, you can find us on the following address:

Tel: +26461 290 5000

Email: [email protected]

Linked-In @Namfisa

Facebook @Namfisa

Namfisa Head Office 51-55 Werner List St,

Upper Ground Gutenberg Plaza

Windhoek Namibia

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