The Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) Board of Governors has announced that it has appointed Joe (Joseph) Gavin as the new Chief Executive Officer of the Authority, who will be formally taking on the role as of September 2021.

As Chief Executive Officer, he will be responsible for chairing the Authority’s Executive Committee and he shall also sit on the Board of Governors of the Authority. Mr. Gavin was selected following an open call for applications through local and international channels. An assessment was undertaken by a specially appointed Selection Committee, chaired by an independent assessor, Professor Carlo Cottarelli, an Italian economist and former Director of the International Monetary Fund, and also comprising members from the Board of Governors.

The appointment of Joe Gavin comes after a scandal at the MFSA late last year led to the ouster of the regulator’s previous CEO, Joseph Cuschieri. Mr. Cuschieri resigned in November after reports surfaced in the country that Mr. Cuschieri and MFSA general counsel Edwina Licari had gone on an all-expenses-paid trip to Las Vegas with Maltese businessman and casino owner Yorgen Fenech in May 2018.

In his new role as Chief Executive Officer of the MFSA, Joe Gavin shall be responsible for the overall management and performance of the Authority, and the implementation of reforms and consolidation in the financial services sector. Mr. Gavin acted as General Counsel within the Central Bank of Ireland between 2009 and 2015, at a time in which the Irish regulator was undergoing significant policy and structural change, and he was instrumental in guiding the Irish watchdog during a sensitive time, post-recession. He was more recently employed as a Partner and Head of Financial Services at Irish law firm ByrneWallace, providing specialist input in areas relating to regulation and enforcement in financial services.

The MFSA board added that it would like to thank Dr. Christopher P. Buttigieg, who acted as Chief Executive Officer ad interim since 30 October and who was instrumental for the Authority during this “challenging period”.