Monday, 21 September 2015 - 15:36
Report: ABN Amro concealed CFO’s ties to royal family
ABN Amro's financial director Kees van Dijkhuizen has a function as a board member of King Willem Alexander and other members of the royal family's "financial holding company" that is not mentioned in any of the bank's documents. The Volkskrant reported this on Monday. According to the newspaper, this holding company, called Stichting Bewind, supervises the capital and inheritances of the royal family. This extra function of Van Dijkhuizen is not mentioned anywhere in ABN Amro's documents. A spokesperson for Van Dijkhuizen said to the newspaper that the bank knows about this extra function, but decided against reporting it in the annual report or on the website because of the "high sensitivity and privacy" involved therein. The bank justifies this break in policy by stating "that this additional function affects the privacy of the royal family." The spokesperson also said that regulator Dutch Central Bank (DNB) and owner Dutch state are well aware of this extra function and that all of the CFO's other external activities are listed on the bank's website. Earlier this year regulator DNB reprimanded ABN Amro for not having sufficient insight into its management's other positions. Finance Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem also emphasized the importance of transparency on the management's other positions. In a letter to the Tweede Kamer, lower house of parliament, he wrote that "every commissioner, like every manager, have for many years been tied" to "a comprehensive regulation around conflicts of interest and this includes the obligation to report any (potential) conflict of interest directly". According to the Volkskrant, the Finance Minister now states that he has "understanding" for the "bank's considerations".