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Insights / News
The CDB is a regional financial institution, established by an Agreement signed on 18th October 1969, in Kingston, Jamaica. The CDB came into existence for the purpose of contributing to the harmonious economic growth and development of member countries in the Caribbean, and promoting economic cooperation and integration among them. It is headquartered in Barbados. It has 19 borrowing members countries and is supported by 9 non-borrowing member countries, including the United Kingdom.
The CDB’s Office of Integrity of Integrity, Compliance and Accountability (“ICA”) supports and reinforces institutional integrity within the CDB and prohibits wrongdoing related to fraud, corruption, collusion and other sanctionable practices.
John has been appointed to sit as a Sanctions Appeals Officer and will hear appeals against decisions of the CDB imposing sanctions. The role is a quasi-judicial one. Alex has been appointed as a Sanctions Officer, and will make determinations as to whether sanctions should be imposed, following an investigation into whether alleged misconduct took place.
The ICA is an operationally independent office, separate from the other departments of the CDB. The ICA reports administratively to the President and functionally to the Board of Directors through its Oversight and Assurance Committee. The two-stage sanctions administrative framework – the Sanctions Officer as first tier and the Sanctions Appeals Officer as second tier – reflects the sanctions regime of most Multilateral Development Banks (“MDBs”) such as the World Bank (which operates a Sanctions and Debarment Officer at first instance and a Sanctions Board at second instance) and the Inter-American Development Bank (operating a Sanctions Office and Sanctions Committee).
The five main MDBs are the African Development Bank, the Asian Development Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the Inter-American Development Bank and the World Bank Group. Each MDB uses its own decision-making framework to determine whether sanctions should be imposed. The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, headquartered in Beijing, began operations in January 2016 and is likely, in due course, to join the ranks of the more established MDBs, as is the recent New Development Bank (or ‘BRICS’ Bank), headquartered in Shanghai. Smaller, regional MDBs include the CDB, the Black Sea Trade and Development Bank and the Nordic Investment Bank.
John practises in the fields of public and commercial law. A former Caribbean Attorney General, he took silk at the age of 39, and has since developed a leading practice both internationally and domestically. He is currently engaged by the World Bank to draft Mongolia’s virtual assets law and by the Inter-American Development Bank on a Caribbean project to develop a comprehensive scheme for the declaration of assets and interests by public figures. He has acted in a number of sanctions related matters involving MDBs. He writes the Latin American and Caribbean chapter of Lissack and Horlick on Bribery (3rd edition, Lexis Nexis).
Alex has a wealth of experience of MDBs and their sanctions and debarment regimes. His practice consists of advocacy, litigation, investigations and advisory work. He has represented companies and individuals before both the World Bank’s Sanctions Board and the Asian Development Bank’s Integrity Oversight Committee and, between 2014 and 2017, he was instructed by the Integrity and Anti-Corruption Department of the African Development Bank in a complex international corruption case which was jointly investigated by the US Securities and Exchange Commission. Alex authored the new chapter on the Sanctions Regimes of MDBs for Lissack and Horlick on Bribery (3rd edition, Lexis Nexis) and he has lectured on the sanctions proceedings of MDBs to a number of institutions including the Brazilian Bar Association, the British Chamber of Commerce, the Shanghai Bar Association, English Law Week in Mexico and Jesus College, Cambridge. His work on sanctions has continued through his efforts with TI’s Suspension and Debarment Taskforce and Oxford International Organisations (a new OUP database) as a rapporteur. Alex was appointed to the Attorney General’s London B Panel and admitted to the New York Bar in 2019.
If you would like to discuss any of the issues covered in this article please contact John or Alex directly or via their practice management team; David Smith on (+44 (0)20 7427 4905) or Colin Bunyan on +44 (0)20 7427 4886 for a confidential discussion.
News, International 23 Jul, 2020
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