Most African economies have so far succeeded in navigating a year beset with economic challenges. Writing in TXF, Nabil Frik, Managing Director for Africa and the Middle East at British Arab Commercial Bank, discusses why Francophone Africa has beaten expectations.
Francophone Africa – encompassing 29 countries across the continent – includes some of Africa’s fastest growing economies. As the region works towards a post-pandemic recovery, its relationship with the rest of the world is also undergoing a profound shift, with Francophone Africa replacing its long-standing economic reliance on France with a more multi-polar relationship with other regions.
Read the full article in TXF.
While global trade volumes have been down significantly in 2020, Joon Kim, the Global Head of Trade Finance Product and Portfolio Management at BNY Mellon, sees “a cautious sense of optimism and recovery” by the latter part of the fourth quarter of this year and the beginning of next, at the macro-level.
Arnon Goldstein, Head of Treasury Services for Asia Pacific at BNY Mellon, observed overall decline in payment volumes, underlining weakness in clients’ demand, but an increase in liquidity, especially in local currency and dollar liquidity as lending demand has been depressed. However, any rebound in volume will be uneven as some economies continue to grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic.
The disruption to traditional supply chains and logistics has precipitated the need to strengthen business continuity planning to increase institutions operational resiliency and ability to operate remotely. Processes have to be streamlined and enhanced to incorporate alternative digital solutions, such as e-signature and biometric-enabled authentication and authorisation, to replace traditional manual ones. The bank is pivoting to digital alternatives, such as web-based meeting, and digitising more of its internal as well as clients’ processes in order to facilitate client transactions and increase efficiency.
To watch the interview, please click here.
Commerzbank has published the latest edition of FI.News, the bank’s newsletter for financial institutions. Featuring various in-depth articles and interviews, the biannual newsletter collects Commerzbank’s latest insights on the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead for financial services in today’s transformational times.
Financial institutions are understandably operating in challenging circumstances. Yet this edition of FI.News keeps its gaze firmly ahead – exploring the ways that the current situation could be a catalyst for change in a number of areas, including digitalisation, trade finance, African trade and sustainable finance. The newsletter also provides latest news stories and internal updates from the Commerzbank Institutionals division.
Moorgate has produced FI.News since 2013. The latest edition may be found here.
Africa-EU trade relations have long been critical: the EU is Africa’s largest trade partner and this inter-continental trade barrier will be crucial to spur both region’s post-pandemic recovery.
Writing for Financier Worldwide, Jeff Fallon, head of client coverage at BACB, claims that despite likely changes to risk appetite for supporting this trade corridor, it would be short-sighted to let Europe-Africa collaboration fall behind.
Fallon writes: “Maintaining connections between Europe and Africa will be vital to economic recovery, and specialist banking partners that remain committed to Africa are on hand to help navigate the process.”
Read the full article here.
The Covid-19 pandemic is presenting global trade with exceptional challenges. With disruption to many supply chains due to large-scale logistics obstacles, and many sectors seeing significant decreases in demand, exporters must traverse an uncertain, unfamiliar landscape.
Prior to the pandemic, significant efforts were already being made by many banks to enhance trade finance through technological innovation. But events of the past few months have spurred a flurry of activity from blockchain to optical character recognition (OCR). Participants have been required to move away from ingrained, paper-based procedures and adopt digital solutions in order to ensure their businesses can continue to operate effectively.
In an article for GTR, Joon Kim, Global Head of Trade Finance Product and Portfolio Management, BNY Mellon Treasury Services, explains how banks are addressing these short-term challenges, and looking to a digital future.
To read the full article, please click here.
The ongoing pandemic has brought significant disruption to trade across all corners of the globe. Responses from countries in the MEA region , including strict social distancing guidelines, work from home requirements and a host of travel restrictions, have had the unfortunate effect of creating a number of logistical obstacles that are now proving a barrier to trade. As a result, the trade finance industry – not known for its ability to swiftly enact change – has had to rapidly adapt to keep trade flowing.
But what changes have banks in the Middle East been making to keep trade flowing? BNY Mellon’s Bana Akkad Azhari, Head of Relationship Management MEA & CIS, and Joon Kim, Global Head of Trade Finance Product and Portfolio Management, explains that in response the the trade finance industry has turned its attention to an array of digital initiatives – a move that is paving the way for a more agile future for global trade.
To read the full article, please click here.
Following the recent launch of its global survey, Overcoming the Trade Finance Gap: Root Causes and Remedies, BNY Mellon, in partnership with GTR, invited industry experts to take part in a virtual roundtable to examine and build upon the findings. The participants were Joon Kim – Global Head of Trade Finance Product and Portfolio Management, BNY Mellon Treasury Services; Maurice Iskandar – Assistant General Manager, Head of International Division, Banque Libano-Française; Olivier Paul – Head of Policy, ICC Banking Commission; Fernando Pierri – Global Head of Trade Services, Banco Santander Brasil; and Michael Lim – Head of Financial Institutions, Transaction Banking, ANZ.
To read the full article, please click here
With the market for payables finance – and the understanding of it – evolving all the time, Deutsche Bank has released a revised and updated guide that seeks not only to factor in the latest developments, but also to re-evaluate the key questions that define the industry. What is payables finance and where does it fit into the wider universe of supply chain finance techniques? What is driving demand for these solutions? How do the physical and financial supply chains interact? And how do you go about setting up a successful programme?
“Payables Finance A guide to working capital optimisation” can be read here.
The news was covered by: Business Money, Trade Finance Global International Trade Magazine, TRF news, TXF, The global treasurer
The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Banking Commission has released a whitepaper urging the trade finance industry to work together to ensure that regulation does not hinder the availability of trade finance and remains relevant in a digital landscape.
The milestone report, titled Banking regulation and the campaign to mitigate the unintended consequences for trade finance, takes a close look at the regulation and compliance requirements that have come into force since the 2007 financial crisis and the industry’s subsequent efforts in promoting the fair treatment of trade finance instruments.
To read the report, please click here.
The news was covered in GTR, TXF, Business Money, PYMNTS, Trade Finance Analytics, Trade Finance Global, Fintech Finance, Finextra, International Trade Magazine, TRF News, Financial IT, Trade Arabia, The Corporate Treasurer, The Global Treasurer.
Writing for International Trade Magazine, Christoph Gugelmann and Nils Behling, co-founders of Tradeteq, discuss the financing problems facing SMEs – especially in emerging markets – and how trade receivables’ potential as an investable asset class can help provide a solution.
Indeed, while trade finance has been a sound investment option for decades, only now has technology reached the right level to make these assets easily investable.
Read the full article in the latest print edition of International Trade Magazine.