OCC Announces Workshops for Directors of National Community Banks and Federal Savings Associations

News Release 2022-44 | April 27, 2022

WASHINGTON—The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) today announced its schedule of workshops for board directors of national community banks and federal savings associations for the second half of 2022.

The OCC examiner-led workshops provide practical training and guidance to directors of national community banks and federal savings associations to support the safe and sound operation of community-based financial institutions.

The OCC offers five workshops at a cost of $99 each:

  • Building Blocks: Keys to Success for Directors and Senior Management
  • Risk Governance: Improving Director Effectiveness
  • Compliance Risk: What Directors Need to Know
  • Credit Risk: Directors Can Make a Difference
  • Operational Risk: Navigating Rapid Changes

Senior management and other key executives of national community banks and federal savings associations supervised by the OCC are also eligible to attend the Building Blocks workshop.

Workshops are limited to 35 participants. Attendees will receive course materials, supervisory publications, and lunch.

To view the schedule and locations of workshops, and register online, visit the OCC’s website. If you have additional questions about the workshops, please contact the OCC Bank Director Workshop Team at (202) 649-6490 or [email protected].

Media Contact

Brian Walch
(202) 649-6870

Acting Comptroller Issues Statement on Standards for Stablecoins

News Release 2022-43 | April 27, 2022

WASHINGTON—Acting Comptroller of the Currency Michael J. Hsu issued the following statement after his appearance today at the Artificial Intelligence and the Economy: Charting a Path for Responsible and Inclusive AI symposium hosted by the U.S. Department of Commerce, National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), FinRegLab, and the Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence.

Well-designed standards can promote inclusive and responsible innovation. Take the internet, for instance. The technical foundations of the internet provide for an open, royalty-free network – something we take for granted today. Those foundations did not emerge on their own. They were developed by standard setting bodies like IETF (Internet Engineering Task Force) and W3C (World Wide Web Consortium), which had representatives with differing perspectives, a shared public interest ethos, and a strong leader committed to the vision of an open and inclusive internet.

Emerging technologies such as AI and stablecoins enable transactions in blockchain-based systems. Stablecoins lack shared standards and are not interoperable. To ensure that stablecoins are open and inclusive, I believe a standard setting initiative similar to that undertaken by IETF and W3C needs to be established, with representatives not just from crypto/Web3 firms, but also including academics and government. My conversation today with Deputy Secretary Graves underscored that need and reflected the willingness of governmental bodies like NIST and the OCC to engage in such efforts.

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Stephanie Collins
(202) 649-6870

Remarks by Secretary of the Treasury Janet L. Yellen on Economic Lessons and Principles in Relief and Recovery

WASHINGTON – Secretary of the Treasury Janet L. Yellen delivered remarks at the Brooking’s Hamilton and Hutchins Center event Recession Remedies: Lessons Learned from the US Economic Policy Response to COVID-19.

As Prepared for Delivery

I’d like to thank the Hamilton Project and the Hutchins Center for hosting this important conference.  I am especially honored to participate in today’s event with former Treasury Secretary Bob Rubin.  And I congratulate the authors of the volume on recession remedies for assembling a thoughtful collection of essays.  This book is a useful guide for policymakers preparing to address future economic challenges.

Like many of the scholars engaged in this two-day event, I am no stranger to business cycles.  My career has spanned three years at the Council of Economic Advisers and almost two decades at the Federal Reserve.  Over this period, the U.S. has experienced seven recessions—varying in origin from a financial crisis to the bursting of the tech bubble to a global pandemic. 

Beginning in the mid-1980s, economists observed what they called the “Great Moderation.”  Many hypothesized that a combination of structural economic changes coupled with monetary policy innovations had permanently dampened the business cycle.  Unfortunately, the financial crisis of 2008 and the ensuing Great Recession dashed that hope.  Economies remain vulnerable to major shocks.  Most recently, the global pandemic, and now Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, underscore the likelihood of large economic shocks and disruptions that must be addressed.   Downturns are likely to continue to challenge the economy. 

Recessions exact heavy tolls.  For example, the average output loss during the last seven recessions is roughly 3.2% of GDP.  Excess unemployment—unemployment in excess of the estimated natural rate—during the ensuing recoveries averaged about 4.5 percentage points.  Moreover, deep and long-lasting recessions appear to permanently lower the path of potential output.  Thus, entirely appropriately, policymakers typically seek to mitigate these costs by implementing policies designed to ignite a quick and strong recovery.  That is one of the most important responsibilities of policymakers and has been a central focus of the Biden Administration since the outset.  

Accordingly, my remarks today will focus on the current recovery.  And I will highlight some “lessons learned” for recovering from future recessions.

A first observation is that, conditional on the inevitability of large negative shocks, countries will fare better if their economies are more resilient and less fragile.  Research that improves our understanding of the transmission channels of disruptive shocks can improve our resilience.  Improved understanding of breaks in supply chains, increases in commodity prices, bursting of asset bubbles, and labor and productivity shocks can help policymakers implement reforms that bolster our economic resilience. 

To take one example, a wealth of research preceding the financial crisis of 2008, but not sufficiently appreciated at that time, has now given policymakers a much better understanding of the linkages between financial markets and the real economy.  It explains how risks to financial stability emerge and how policymakers can monitor the economy to detect growing threats in real time.  Importantly, it explores financial regulations that are needed to diminish financial stability risks.  In the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis, the Dodd-Frank Act mandated new regulations intended to diminish financial sector fragility.  Far more stringent capital and liquidity standards were imposed on America’s largest and most systemic banks. 

The effectiveness of these measures was tested during the pandemic.  They enabled America’s banks to weather the pandemic shock while meeting the credit needs of a recovering economy.  But the crisis also revealed that significant vulnerabilities in the nonbank financial sector had not been addressed, and, consequently, the Financial Stability Oversight Council and the Biden Administration are working to mitigate these remaining threats. 

In recent weeks, energy price movements have been another significant source of global economic shocks.  The Biden Administration’s proposed energy agenda is designed to diminish our reliance on fossil fuels and help achieve greater energy independence.  These shifts will mitigate our future vulnerability to oil price shocks.  At the same time, they will abet the transition to cleaner energy sources which will, in due course, lessen the risks tied to natural disasters and climate change.  Over the long run, such measures will reduce volatility while also lessening the depth of future recessions.

In addition to improving the resilience of the economy to shocks, it is imperative to build and maintain an effective and efficient set of recession remedies—recovery policies that shorten the duration of recessions and mitigate economic pain.  The construction of these recovery policies must be informed by lived experience and rigorous evaluation of prior approaches, including those employed to address the economic devastation of 2020 and the beginning of 2021—which is, of course, the central focus of this convening.

I will offer some reactions to the newly released volume.  And I will suggest some further guiding principles for recovery policy.  But let me first pause to reflect on the current recovery and the progress that has been made over the past year and a half.

From a historical perspective, it is important to emphasize that we have already witnessed a rapid recovery buoyed by a substantial government response—beginning with the CARES Act at the start of the pandemic, and continuing with the Consolidated Appropriations Act in late 2020, and the American Rescue Plan enacted in early 2021.  These federal fiscal actions were complemented by an unprecedented response by the Federal Reserve along with relief instituted by national and subnational governments and central banks abroad.

These responses played major roles in igniting a robust recovery.  Notably, the American Rescue Plan played a central role in driving strong growth throughout 2021, with the United States real GDP growth outpacing other advanced economies and our labor market recovering faster relative to historical experience.  This has meant diminished scarring and less human suffering.  Even through Delta and Omicron—and now a global supply shock due to Putin’s unprovoked actions in Ukraine—the Rescue Plan has allowed our economy to face unknown risks from a position of strength.

As we retrospectively evaluate the merits of this approach, it is important to keep in mind two key factors that influenced the chosen response.  

First, these policies were adopted under conditions of substantial uncertainty.  Throughout 2020, and into 2021, the path of the pandemic, including its severity and the role of future viral strains could not be predicted.  Given this uncertainty, the recovery packages sought to protect against tail risk.  They were not just tailored to address the median outcome.  Let me be clear: the tail risk in 2020 and 2021 was a downturn that could match the Great Depression.

It is fairly easy to evaluate policies ex post.   But it is important to remember the dire economic projections prevailed throughout the early days of the pandemic.  In a survey conducted in the spring of 2020, 37 percent of small business owners expected to be closed by year’s end. Zillow’s baseline scenario for the housing market was a 60 percent decline in sales with no price appreciation across 2020 and most of 2021.  In mid-2020 the Congressional Budget Office projected that the unemployment rate would average 9.3 percent over 2021.  And, even in early 2021, the labor market recovery had stalled and the Blue Chip consensus projected years of elevated unemployment.  These were not worst-case scenarios, but rather baseline projections.  Tail risk scenarios were much worse.

Second, the scars from the Great Recession were still quite fresh.  Less than a decade earlier, the United States had lived through an extended, and oftentimes slow, economic recovery in which Americans became detached from the labor market, lost homes en masse, entered bankruptcy and debt collection at alarming rates, and endured scarring that would last a lifetime.  Policymakers understood the imperative of exiting the downturn as quickly as possible and ensuring that support reached those workers and households at greatest risk of that scarring. 

These factors influenced the design of the policies that were implemented.  Moreover, as has occurred in times of crisis, it is evident that some policy approaches presented significant implementation challenges throughout the pandemic.  These factors highlight the need for reform of our recovery infrastructure.

In this vein, the Hamilton and Hutchins volume seeks to learn from recent experience and identify key lessons for policymakers.  It is an important effort, and there are many critical lessons to be gleaned from these studies.  I’d like to highlight a handful of points that I consider particularly salient.  

Ganong, Greig, Pascal, Sullivan, and Vavra argue that unemployment insurance modernization is critical.  I strongly agree.  In their words: “The trade-off between speed and accuracy does not have to exist.”  In that regard, recent actions taken by the Labor Department to modernize unemployment insurance by preventing fraud, improving access, and reducing backlogs represent meaningful progress and are key steps.  

Gelman and Stephens helpfully explain that stimulus payments can be an effective mechanism for injecting cash into the economy quickly, but we must also continue to study the interplay between cash support and the social safety net.  The authors note, for example, that with long delays in the receipt of unemployment insurance and significant earnings losses even for workers who retained employment, rapid receipt of cash assistance served as a partial offset.  But better understanding of these interactions will help us pinpoint when and how cash assistance should be delivered. 

Willen, Gerardi, and Lambie-Hansen rightly assess that mortgage forbearance relief was a successful element of the relief effort and a promising approach in future recovery packages,   although it was neither costless nor a panacea.  Throughout the pandemic, the combination of forbearance relief and the support from Treasury’s Homeownership Assistance Fund has provided an important tool to preserve housing stability for American homeowners at risk.

Following Goodman and Wachter, the crisis has exposed the need for a more permanent rental safety net.  Housing stability is a foremost concern not just in downturns, but in recoveries as well.  During this crisis, Treasury was at the forefront of establishing—for the first time—a national effort at scale for rental assistance.  Emergency Rental Assistance has not only helped to keep evictions below their pre-pandemic levels, it has also enabled states and localities to build an infrastructure for rental assistance going forward. 

Finally, Aizer and Persico surmise that the rapid and sizable policy response will have long-term payoffs in terms of childhood outcomes including nutrition, health, and academic achievement.  Indeed, I predict that researchers will establish that the Biden Administration’s expanded Child Tax Credit increased childhood wellbeing during this crisis.

The preceding lessons come from interventions associated with the 2020 recession.  There are also general lessons from the pandemic experience and from past recessions.        

First, it is imperative to address the specific source of crises.  In 2008, recovery would have been impossible without recapitalizing and restoring confidence in the banking system.  In 2020, in contrast, recovery was tied to the progress of the pandemic.  Vaccine dissemination has been the most important element of the response.  Other crises will have different origins.  It will be critical to address their root cause.

Second, we must consider equity.  Downturns are often most destructive for the most vulnerable neighborhoods and populations, and especially communities of color.  The American Rescue Plan made sure that funds reached those communities with the most serious damage.  That included, for example: flexible rental assistance programs that did not exclude the neediest renters because of overly stringent documentation requirements; targeted outreach in a range of languages; and state and local funds used for investments targeted to communities especially vulnerable to the pandemic.

Third, effective automatic stabilizers—called “workhorse antirecession programs” in the 2019 book Recession Ready—are perhaps the most important policy tool, which is why President Biden proposed them in his original Rescue Plan proposal.  Every recession in recent decades has reinforced the need for a flexible, automatic response.  Well-designed automatic stabilizers are the best remedy.  Preparing for the next recession means not only improving existing stabilizers but expanding their reach to other forms of social support and building the “pipes” to distribute relief in a timely manner.   

Fourth, it is necessary to preserve attachment to the labor force in an economic downturn.  As a hangover from the Great Recession, the long-term unemployed and those out of the labor force continue to suffer its scars.  While we need more work to best target our policy response, in recent years we’ve worked with multiple new policy levers to keep workers on payroll and off long-term unemployment.  And the strength of the American Rescue Plan has no doubt contributed to the record fall in long-term unemployment—a strong and positive contrast to the lingering high numbers of long-term unemployed that we saw after the Great Recession.    

Fifth, policymakers must support basic human needs, including housing, health care, and nutrition.  Denial of access not only results in immediate suffering, but also has long-term consequences as well.  Programs like the Biden Administration’s expanded Child Tax Credit and Economic Impact Payments provided umbrella support for these needs, but more targeted in-kind relief can also be an effective tool.

Lastly, we need to invest in measurement, oversight, and accountability to improve impact.  Economists and other researchers need high-quality, high-frequency data to assess the depth of recession in real time and to adequately evaluate the success of policy interventions.  The rapid onset of the pandemic recession dramatically highlighted the need for better data.  And despite admirable creativity by researchers in 2020 to assess the state of the economy, we must invest now in better tools for monitoring.  Similarly, comprehensive oversight and accountability safeguards—designed in advance—are necessary to ensure that public resources are appropriately deployed.  

In conclusion, I commend the Hamilton Project, the Hutchins Center, and the contributing authors for this important volume.  Legislation over the past two years, unprecedented in size and scope, was informed by a rich literature directed at improving recovery policies. The pandemic’s toll would have been much worse if not for policy response informed by careful study.  The research and insight presented in this volume will help guide America through future recessions.  On behalf of the millions of Americans whose lives will be affected, I thank you.

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READOUT: Secretary of the Treasury Janet L. Yellen’s Meeting with World Trade Organization Director-General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

WASHINGTON – On April 25, Secretary Yellen met with World Trade Organization Director-General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, where they discussed the global pandemic response, WTO reform,  and prospects for the upcoming June WTO Ministerial.  They also discussed supply chain risks, and trade implications of climate policies.  They agreed on the importance of addressing food security issues raised by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.  Secretary Yellen expressed appreciation for the work of the Multilateral Leaders Task Force on COVID-19, and Director-General Okonjo-Iweala agreed with Secretary Yellen on the continued importance of making progress on pandemic response.

READOUT: Secretary of the Treasury Janet L. Yellen’s Meeting with Indonesia Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan

WASHINGTON – U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Janet L. Yellen met yesterday with Indonesia Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan. They discussed the potential for an accelerated transition away from coal in Indonesia’s power sector as well as the potential for a Just Energy Transition Partnership (JETP), a model that aims to aggregate donor country, multilateral development bank, philanthropic, and private sector resources to support that transition. Through a JETP, Indonesia and an international partnership group would work to speed coal-fired generation decommissioning and expedite the deployment of renewable energy while also supporting those workers and communities who are most vulnerable to the energy transition.

Deputy Secretary of the Treasury Wally Adeyemo Highlights Orlando Job Training Programs Funded By The American Rescue Plan

WASHINGTON — Deputy Secretary of the Treasury Wally Adeyemo today visited local job training programs funded by President Biden’s American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act in Orlando, Florida.  Amidst today’s strong labor market – with the unemployment rate well below 4 percent and a record high number of job openings – one of the most important things local governments can do to bring more people into the workforce is to offer training for in-demand careers and help them re-enter the job market. Based on the latest reports submitted to Treasury, state and local governments across the country – including Orlando – are increasingly using State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds (SLFRF) to respond to the economic impacts of the pandemic by training workers for well-paid, in-demand careers.

“One year after President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act into law, state and local governments are increasingly using those resources to expand their labor force and fill open positions,” said Deputy Secretary Adeyemo. “For all workers, and especially those displaced by the pandemic, job training provides a critical pathway to new long-term careers that can support them and their families.”

“Education and job training removes barriers and opens doors to opportunity for everyone which is why the city is grateful to the federal government for investing American Rescue Plan funds in our community and supporting our efforts to launch the new RISE Employment and Training Program,” said Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer. “We were pleased to share with Deputy Secretary Adeyemo how our community collaborates to create new career and job training opportunities for our residents that also allow us to solve the workforce needs of our region’s businesses.”

As one of the nation’s fastest growing cities, Orlando has a significant need for skilled workers to support infrastructure and construction projects in the region. Deputy Secretary Adeyemo and Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer highlighted the city’s new Rapid Increase of Skills and Employment (RISE) program, which is using SLFRF to provide residents with skills like industrial machinery mechanics and welding, which are in short-supply. RISE will provide full wrap-around support for participants, including placing them at over 100 local short-term job and vocational job training programs, covering tuition costs, and providing career support services like job placement and coaching. The city is also using SLFRF funds to open a RISE office, which will be staffed with career counselors and case managers. In an effort to bridge the opportunity gaps further exacerbated by the pandemic, RISE will give priority to applicants living in the city’s lowest-income neighborhoods.

Examples of state, local, and Tribal governments using SLFRF to train workers for well-paid, in-demand careers include:

  • The State of Colorado has committed $60 million for training and improving employment outcomes to support reskilling, upskilling, or next-skilling, including providing access to short-term training to obtain an industry-recognized credential. The funding will also support grants that promote innovation to improve employment outcomes for workers and outreach to underserved and disproportionately impacted populations.
  • Pima County, Arizona is investing $5.3 million in financial support to improve residents’ access to in-demand jobs with family-sustaining wages, apprenticeships, and other workforce development training programs to gain employment in high growth career fields.
  • The State of Wisconsin has committed $162 million to strengthening the state’s workforce development system to support pandemic recovery plans developed by regional organizations that use collaborative, sustainable, and innovative approaches to meet the workforce needs of businesses and workers.
  • Baltimore, Maryland will invest $3.8 million to aid those who are unemployed or underemployed, support youth employment, and fund sector-based job training in high-growth industries. The funding will provide direct support to struggling small businesses with wages for impacted workers; summer jobs and needed income to city youth, subsidized employment to adult residents, and occupational training that will enable residents to skill up and obtain jobs in high-demand industries in the region.
  • The State of Maine will provide the Maine Community College System with $35 million for workforce development initiatives that support short-term, no-cost training for approximately 8,500 Mainers negatively impacted by COVID-19 to gain the necessary skills and credentials for careers in key economic sectors. The State will also invest $7.2 million in training and stackable credential attainment to help incumbent frontline healthcare workers attain the credentials to move into the next rung on their career pathway.
  • The Mescalero Apache Tribe is aligning job needs with skills required to fill these important positions through a workforce development program that will focus on vocational education by providing scholarships to both Tribal citizens and current employees to obtain certificates and further education in welding, carpentry, plumbing, and electrical– all jobs critical to carry out the Tribe’s COVID-19 recovery plan.
  • The State of Utah has invested $15 million in Learn & Work, a state-wide program that provides tuition assistance for short-term programs at post-secondary institutions for unemployed or underemployed individuals and prepares students for higher-paying and more stable, high-impact careers by matching them with companies looking for much-needed skills and expertise.
  • Nassau County, New York will invest $10 million to assist unemployed workers through apprenticeship programs in the construction and building trades, entrepreneurial skills training to support new women- and minority-owned businesses, and retraining and upskilling programs through Nassau’s local colleges and universities.
  • Boston, Massachusetts is investing $3 million to expand green jobs training opportunities for city residents, with a particular focus on women, people of color, immigrants, and returning citizens. Funding is being provided to external organizations that are training and connecting residents to green jobs, as well as to build further pathways for green jobs with the City of Boston’s workforce.

 

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OCC Launches Discussion Series on Financial Health

News Release 2022-42 | April 22, 2022

WASHINGTON—The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) today announced the launch of a discussion series to explore issues relating to the financial wellbeing of consumers.

The Financial Health: Vital Signs series will feature discussions with Acting Comptroller of the Currency Michael J. Hsu and academic, community and industry leaders on issues affecting the financial health of consumers. The quarterly discussion series will be livestreamed and is open to the public.

The first event will be held April 28 and feature discussions on minority ownership of cryptocurrency with John Hope Bryant, the founder, CEO and Chairman of Operation Hope, and Professor Tonya Evans of Penn State Dickinson Law.

For information on how to view the event, please visit the Comptroller Appearances page on OCC.gov.

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Stephanie Collins
(202) 649-6870

Peloton Interactive, Inc. Announces Third Quarter Fiscal 2022 Earnings Release Date, Conference Call, and Webcast

NEW YORK, April 22, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Peloton Interactive, Inc. (Nasdaq: PTON) will release its third quarter fiscal 2022 results before the U.S. stock market opens on Tuesday, May 10, 2022. The Company will hold a conference call to discuss results at 8:30 a.m. (Eastern Time) that day.

The U.S. toll free dial-in for the conference call is 1-866-777-2509, and the international dial-in number is 1-412-317-5413. Participants may pre-register for the conference call at: https://dpregister.com/sreg/10166528/f281415100. A live webcast of the conference call will also be available on the investor relations page of the company’s website at https://investor.onepeloton.com

For those unable to participate in the conference call, a replay will be available after the conclusion of the call on May 10, 2022 through May 17, 2022. The U.S. toll free replay dial-in number is 1-877-344-7529, and the international replay dial-in number is 1-412-317-0088. The replay passcode is 7844675.

About Peloton

Peloton is the leading interactive fitness platform in the world with a loyal community of more than 6.6 million Members. The company pioneered connected, technology-enabled fitness, and the streaming of immersive, instructor-led boutique classes for its Members anytime, anywhere. Peloton makes fitness entertaining, approachable, effective, and convenient, while fostering social connections that encourage its Members to be the best versions of themselves. An innovator at the nexus of fitness, technology, and media, Peloton has reinvented the fitness industry by developing a first-of-its-kind subscription platform that seamlessly combines the best equipment, proprietary networked software, and world-class streaming digital fitness and wellness content, creating a product that its Members love. Consumers can access the brand’s immersive content through the Peloton Bike, Peloton Tread, Peloton Bike+, Peloton Guide and Peloton App, which allows access to a full slate of fitness classes across disciplines, on any iOS or Android device, Apple TV, Fire TV, Roku TVs, and Chromecast and Android TV. Organizations and enterprises have the opportunity to access select Peloton products and the platform for their teams and customers through Peloton Corporate Wellness or Peloton Commercial. Founded in 2012 and headquartered in New York City, Peloton has a number of retail showrooms across the US, UK, Canada, Germany, and Australia. For more information, visit www.onepeloton.com.

Investor Relations Contact: Peter Stabler[email protected] 


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Source: Peloton Interactive

READOUT: Deputy Secretary of the Treasury Wally Adeyemo’s Meeting with Lithuanian Minister of Finance Gintare Skaiste

WASHINGTON – Deputy Secretary of the Treasury Wally Adeyemo met with Lithuanian Minister of Finance Gintare Skaiste today. They discussed close partnership on implementing and enforcing international sanctions on Russia for its war against Ukraine as well as on Belarus for its support of the war. Deputy Secretary Adeyemo noted Lithuania’s leadership on sanctions and they discussed next steps for continuing the economic pressure campaign while avoiding unintended consequences for the global economy. He also reaffirmed strong U.S. support for Lithuania as it faces economic coercion from the People’s Republic of China.

READOUT: Under Secretary of the Treasury Brian Nelson’s Meeting with Democratic Republic of the Congo Finance Minister Nicolas Kazadi

WASHINGTION – Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian Nelson met with Democratic Republic of the Congo Finance Minister Nicolas Kazadi today, following up on the Under Secretary’s trip to the DRC last month. They discussed continued work on AML/CFT reforms, including the draft law currently being considered in Parliament, additional ways to elevate systemic reforms, and concrete steps to hold accountable corrupt actors. They also discussed the budgetary impacts on the DRC, a net importer of food and fuel, from the spillovers from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.