Reflecting the evolution taking place in the banking industry, the former Bahamas Institute of Bankers (BIB) has undergone not only a name change, but an expanded focus. Executive Director Kim Bodie points out that the Bahamas Institute of Financial Services (BIFS) is showing its members – and other financial services providers – that it is able to provide the necessary training as the country meets the challenges of globalisation.

The training institution has positioned itself to respond to global changes in financial services and heightened demands in the local financial services industry. Education Committee Chairperson William Delancey says BIFS sees it role in society as one of helping to better prepare the workforce for the future of the country. Programmes are being designed to meet the needs of employees of financial services providers in areas such as insurance, investment, mutual funds, law, securities, real estate, and accounting – in addition to the traditional banking.

The Institute was established in 1975, at that time introducing The Bahamas Institute of Bankers (ABIB) programme. Since that time it has conferred almost 500 ABIB diplomas and expanded its training outreach. Last year, it began the daily administration of a new anti-money laundering and compliance diploma programme in association with the Bahamas Association of Compliance Officers (BACO) and the International Compliance Association.

BIFS is hosting a “Bahamas Institute of Financial Services Week” between May 5-9, under the general theme *”Repositioning Financial Services”*. Highlight of the Week is a seminar series addressing issues such as the OECD, TIEA, FTAA, Investment Funds Bill, Ship Registry and Maritime Law, QI Audits, and Foundation Legislation.