Africa’s foremost fintech regulatory platform, RegTech Africa has held the maiden edition of its virtual conference themed ‘REGULATORY INNOVATION: BOLSTERING AFRICA’S ROLE IN THE GLOBAL ECONOMY’. The event had an impressive turnout as over 1,000 global thought leaders, policymakers, C-Level executives, financial regulators, and policymakers were present, while 5,000 virtual streamers joined and were active throughout the conference.
Matteo Rizzi on the opening day of the conference spoke extensively in the breakout session entitled “Regulatory Innovation for Financial Inclusion and Consumer Protection”. In his words, “ We are on the verge of another huge wave of innovation and investments, and regulators have a huge role to play.” This acknowledges the fast-rising number of startups in Africa, hence the regulators need to align all players to achieve the goal of achieving financial inclusion in Africa. There are lots of iterations happening in the fintech space that banks globally can collectively learn from.
Dr. Ritesh Jain while addressing the need for the global financial sector to unify faster recommended that financial institutions open up their services through API. According to him, there is no need to reinvent the wheel. Instead, financial organizations need to adapt to the emerging market. Trends like crypto trading, digital banks, NFTs, and other iterations in the financial space, must be speedily incorporated where necessary to ensure that these long-standing banks are still competitive and relevant to meet their consumers’ needs.
Reiterating the essence of RegTech Africa, during his panel session, Pattison Boleigha, GCCCO Access bank stated, “In today’s world, there is hardly anything you can do without technology so the regulatory arena cannot be left out.” During the Roundtable entitled, “Regtech and its impact in empowering Public and Corporate Governance, Risk & Compliance”, Gary Lyons also corroborated this statement by highlighting the powerful role that RegTech Africa can play in ensuring good governance. In his words, “I passionately believe that Regtech can empower good governance by increasing transparency, harmonizing standards, and empowering better timely compliance and collaboration.”
To address the problem of identity in the financial sector, Legal Identity Identifier (LEI), a software that helps small and enormous businesses to create a globally recognized identity was introduced. LEI helps financial organizations gain insight into the global marketplace, finetune their processes and improve data integrity. With its introduction, small fintech companies can also play on a global scale.
All the breakout panel sessions adequately addressed seminal themes on Financial Technology like Consumer Protection, Financial Inclusion, Digitization, Privacy, and Data Protection among others. Professor Olayinka David-West, Associate Dean, Lagos Business School, during one of such breakout sessions stressed the importance of creating Fintech Associations. According to her, these associations are essential bridges that engender conversations between regulators and new fintech companies on risks and compliance. She opines that associations can also serve as self-regulatory tools and mechanisms that allay the fears of regulators concerning breaching market regulations and structures.
Expressing optimism about RegTech Africa’s global impact, Conference Convener, Mr. Cyril Okoroigwe, said the media platform remained resolute in its drive to engage upcoming fintech companies, and create a stronger platform for dialogue and collaboration between financial organizations and regulators so that like a well-oiled machine, effective systems will be established in the African financial space, and organic growth will rapid enough to meet up with global standards.
RegTech Africa (www.RegTechAfrica.com) is an emergent global digital tech media platform with a niche focus on regulatory technology innovations in Africa and around the world. We leverage our strong local knowledge of the African regulatory technology environment and access to the closely-knit community of top-level decision-makers, Chief executives, strategic stakeholders, and other industry subject matter experts to provide valuable and insightful content on news updates, statistics, case studies, analysis, reviews, polls, and events.