Ministers, bankers, telcos experts, and legislators from 10 nations gathering to boost financial inclusion
Access to finance in remote areas is proven to relieve barriers to poverty reduction, economic growth and female empowerment. Fintech can help solve these challenges, but it needs the help of governments, the public sector and financial institutions to have meaningful impact. Across much of the developed world, people take their bank accounts for granted, safe in the knowledge that their money is secure and that there’s an ATM close at hand. Elsewhere, the concept of financial inclusion remains a pipe-dream. Some 1.7 billion adults worldwide still don’t have access to a bank account, according to data released by the World Bank. The situation is slowly improving, however, with 1.2 billion people getting access to proper banking since 2011, including over half a billion people in the last three years alone.
Banks, telcos, ministries of finance, central banks and leaders in the banking industry from 10 nations across the West African region are set to gather in Lagos at The Future Banking Technology Summit to discuss efforts aimed at increasing financial inclusion in the sub-region by 2020.
The Future Banking Technology Summit will address over two days of panel discussions and case studies showcasing the full value chain of the region’s banking and financial sector to best achieve financial inclusion and sustainable banking sector growth.
Commenting on the Future Banking Tech West Africa Summit, Khalila Baldwin, the director of the Summit said: “At such an exciting time for the financial space in West Africa, we knew it was imperative to launch an event capturing as many of the dynamic components of this sector as possible. A key focus of our event, and many new policies being driven within the region, is to ensure financial inclusion is increased across West Africa. We therefore wanted to shine a light on the leading strategies increasing access to finance with the top financial stakeholders in attendance.”
“Late last year the Central Bank of Nigeria announced the introduction of Payment Service Banks, and amidst so much buzz around Telco’s entering the financial space in Nigeria we also wanted to provide a platform for both the traditional and non-traditional financial entities to converge,” Baldwin added.
The first of its kind event will focus on the future of digitising banking services for Central Banks in West Africa. This is as leveraging off experiences of similar regions can aid in the adoption of best financial inclusion practices, as it is becoming incumbent on banking stakeholders to be rapid, yet savvy in incorporating disruptive mobile money platforms, automated banking systems, tailored credit facilities and crypto-currencies for this dynamic market.
The two days summit will also tackle several paramount topics including, innovation in regulation- Overcoming gaps in rural banking strategies, supporting innovative financial institutions to improve financial inclusion, improving credit facilities to underbanked and Small and Medium Enterprises, throughout main panel discussions and networking breaks.
Future Banking Tech West Africa Summit will include case studies from nations that had similar stories, that have increased access to finance through changes in regulations such as mobile money licences for non- banks and pushing agency banking. To showcase this, the 2-day summit will begin with discussions from some of the region’s regulators, including Mudashiru Olaitan, the director, Development Finance Department, Central Bank Nigeria as he describes the innovative platforms being adopted, adapted, and implemented to increase financial inclusion. The second session is a panel discussion with EFInA, Central Bank Nigeria and Ministry of Finance, Ghana as they further examine the best strategies to enhance rural access to finance.
Then the programme shifts to the traditional bank, that must identify the best solutions and FinTechs to support their commitment to financial inclusion and ensure greater customer experience. The morning sessions will also feature two of the world’s leading banking software providers, Infosys Finacle and Temenos as they highlight how their solutions help banks accelerate their digital transformations and increase inclusive banking, respectively. As mentioned, the morning will also feature two case studies, one from Ghana led by Kwame Oppong with World Banks’ CGAP and the other from Ethiopia led jointly by Ethiopia’s My Amole project owners (Dashen Bank and Moneta Technologies).
Both case studies will shine light on the programs introduced nationally to directly improve financial inclusion while leveraging on technology. The next session will feature the managing director and chief executive officer from one of the region’s leading banks, the conference’s official banking partner, FirstBank Nigeria. Adesola Adeduntan is expertly suited to address the future of CX/ UX in West Africa’s banking sector, as this year marks FirstBanks 125th anniversary of delivering benchmark customer service.
Day 1’s afternoon sessions begin with an executive CIO panel discussion covering the Digital Financial Services Landscape in West Africa featuring Access Bank, Union Bank, UBA and Ghana Commercial Bank. A key part of improving access to finance through digital channels is ensuring additional security.
The next session will feature Forcepoint, the leading cybersecurity solution provider, discuss the role of human-centric cyber security for IP protection. Continuing on with the topic, Bharat Soni, the chief information security officer, Guaranty Trust Bank will expand the discussion with Enhanced information Security within West Africa’s banking sector. Post lunch will feature EFInAs (Nigeria’s Enhancing Financial Innovation & Access) Ashley Immanuel, Head of Research announce insights from their biennial “Access to Financial Services in Nigeria 2018 Survey” to truly understand just how much progress has been achieved, and what recommendations are set.
Onyebuchi Akosa, the group, chief information officer, United Bank for Africa will then discuss open banking strategies and data sharing networks. Finally, the day will wrap up with two leading Fintechs, Intellect Design Arena and Citius Kenya as they showcase their innovative solutions for the banking sector.
The summit brings together under one roof dignitaries from various industries across West Africa countries to exchange visions on ways of achieving progress in financial inclusion, that is becoming highly sought for recently to cater the demand of population, and the rapid penetration of latest telecommunication technologies by customers.
We look forward to welcoming you next week at this event!
– Apr. 19, 2019 @ 12:25 GMT |