Finanstilsynet’s Board of Directors adopted the authority’s new strategy for the period 2019-2022 on 18 December 2018.
Every four years Finanstilsynet reviews the strategy underlying its activities. The strategy formulates goals for the authority’s operations and provides direction during the strategy period, and is therefore an important basis for ongoing prioritisation and management of the authority's activities, including the priorities assigned in annual activity plans.
The statutory basis for Finanstilsynet's activity is set out in the Financial Supervision Act and in provisions of special legislation in the various supervisory areas. The financial legislation is primarily based on EEA legislation and has become comprehensive and detailed over the last few years. Finanstilsynet’s scope of action is limited by legislation and participation in the European supervisory cooperation, as well as the Ministry of Finance’s management of operations through annual letters of allocation and individual assignments. Nevertheless, Finanstilsynet needs to regularly review main trends and overarching priorities.
The strategy for 2015–2018 has provided a sound basis for prioritising and managing activities. In its work on the strategy for the next period, Finanstilsynet reviewed key trends and possible changes in the statutory framework, risk factors, products and behavioural patterns. Views were obtained from relevant trade organisations. Strategic evaluations and plans drawn up by the supervisory authorities of other countries were also reviewed.
Financial stability and well-functioning markets remain the main goal of Finanstilsynet's activities. Targeted prioritising and effective use of available resources are important in enabling Finanstilsynet to meet its main goal. However, goal attainment depends on several factors other than financial supervision. These include both the exercise of authority in other policy areas and other factors of significance to the Norwegian economy.
Both the Norwegian banking crisis and the global financial crisis demonstrated that prevention of financial crises cannot be limited to the supervision of individual institutions. Sound supervision must take into account the reciprocal influence between the macroeconomy and the financial markets. In addition, financial stability requires that the allocation of savings and investments through the capital markets functions in a satisfactory manner at all times. Strong consumer protection is contingent on a robust financial system and transparent markets with good customer protection.
Finanstilsynet’s activities must be organised to ensure that resources are used in a targeted and effective manner. The authority must therefore continuously identify and implement possible streamlining measures by adapting work processes and digitising operations wherever possible. Finanstilsynet must possess relevant and strong professional skills. Good recruitment and competence development processes are therefore crucial if Finanstilsynet is to succeed in fulfilling its role in society. Special strategies are drawn up for digitalisation, communication and competence development at Finanstilsynet.
Finanstilsynet has extensive responsibilities related to the development, implementation and management of complex regulations, most of which apply across the EEA. New, extensive responsibilities, including the role as the Norwegian resolution authority under new banking legislation, have been assigned to Finanstilsynet. At the same time, there are great expectations of Finanstilsynet’s work in virtually all supervisory areas. Individually, these expectations may be well justified, but overall, they are not possible to meet within realistic limits.
An important consideration for Finanstilsynet over the coming years is to ensure adequate resources for its core activity, which is to supervise licensable activities. Supervisory activity must be risk-based, and the resources used on regulatory development and management must as far as possible be adapted to the significance of the regulations for overall goal achievement.
Finn Arnesen Morten Baltzersen
Board Chair Director General