Basel Committee extends membership to G-20

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BASEL - The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision has extended its membership to reflect the increased role of the G-20 group of nations in formulating cross-border regulatory reform.

The freshly added G-20 countries include Argentina, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa and Turkey. Two non-G-20 jurisdictions have also been included in the enlarged club - Singapore and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR).

The increased level of international supervisory collaboration since the financial crisis unfolded has increased the role of the G-20 and sharpened its regulatory teeth through the new Financial Stability Board - formerly the Financial Stability Forum.

The Basel Committee's expansion could be seen not only as a reflection of this change but also a defensive step to ensure it isn't left behind in the formulation of new financial regulation.

The committee's governing body will now expand to include the central bank governors and supervisory heads from the new intake, adding to its previous membership roster of Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Korea, Luxembourg, Mexico, the Netherlands, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the UK and the US.

The committee says its expanded membership will enhance its ability to strengthen global supervisory practices and standards. It will also help to more effectively implement the necessary reforms of the international financial system.

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