How did the COVID-19 pandemic accelerate digital payments services in Latin America? BNY Mellon’s Dino Sani explores in an interview with Latin Finance

Although the ongoing pandemic brought significant disruption, it is also having the positive effect of bringing the digitalization agenda to the fore. And as flows of funds between Latin America and the rest of the world are returning to normal levels, the pandemic has precipitated a permanent change by speeding up the adoption of digital payment services, says Dino Sani, Head of Treasury Services for Latin America at BNY Mellon.

“BNY Mellon was already in this journey toward digitalization but COVID-19 accelerated the process,” Sani said. “And there’s a dramatic impact on our business.”

Latin American banks have been quick to embrace Swift’s Global Payment Initiative (GPI), a collaborative project in which participating banks build on an open platform (API) to add speed and transparency to international payments, according to Sani. And although Latin America’s economies to face a difficult year in 2021 as they open slowly, Sani expects an economic recovery to get underway. “We are seeing some light at the end of the tunnel,” he said.

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In an interview with Banking Dive, BNY Mellon’s Carl Slabicki explores the transformation of the B2B payments ecosystem and the importance of ensuring quick, secure and efficient payments.

Peer-to-peer payments have made consumer transactions cheap and efficient, but the business payment landscape lags, with 47% of B2B payments in 2019 made through cheques.

In recent years, BNY Mellon has been working to embed additional communication, reporting and security measures within B2B payments, ensuring payments are quick, secure and allow for documentation to be exchanged alongside the transactions.

“From a payments perspective, we’re ultimately saying, ‘What can make a payment move safer, more predictable, faster, and provide more transparency to the parties involved?'” Carl Slabicki, Head of Strategic Payment Solutions at BNY Mellon Treasury Services said. “Whether it’s a distributed ledger technology that can do that, or whether it’s a digital currency that can do that, we’re openly exploring all of these.”

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Trade makes the world go round – find out how Commerzbank helps in its new video

Commerzbank’s new video explains the significance of world trade and the important role the bank plays. Frank-Oliver Wolf, Head of CTS Sales Germany, outlines the bank’s global presence, and Enno-Burghard Weitzel, Head of CTS & FI Product Management Trade Services, shows how it is ushering in the new technologies that are revolutionising trade finance.

Watch the video in English or German.

The video was produced and edited by Chuffed Productions.

UniCredit’s Adeline de Metz and Raphael Barisaac on how transaction bank adaptations will benefit corporates in Global Banking and Finance Review

With the global trade environment changing, transaction banks are responding by driving internal efficiencies, expanding their digital offerings, and reconfiguring their client service models. Raphael Barisaac and Adeline de Metz, Global Co-Heads of Trade Finance at UniCredit write in in Global Banking & Finance Review that amidst all this change, the outlook for corporates is promising – increasingly digital and client-centric solutions, combined with fairer and more competitive pricing.

Go here to read the full article online, and here to read the online viewer of the print version (page 22).

BNY Mellon’s Bana Akkad Azhari talks to The Business Year on the importance of the bank’s operations in Lebanon

When asked about the importance of Lebanon to the bank’s operations, Bana Akkad Azhari, Managing Director, BNY Mellon, tells The Business Year that as its central hub in the Middle East since 1963, Lebanon has provided “a solid financial sector and significant client base” as historically one of the most “open and liberal economies in the region”.

She continues that through its Beirut office, BNY Mellon continues to facilitate access and connectivity between local and international capital markets, acting as a depositary bank for three out of the four programs for Lebanese companies listed abroad.

The full article can be read here.

BNY Mellon named ‘Best Transactional Bank for Financial Institutions in EMEA’ by EMEA Finance

As part of their 2017 Treasury Services Awards, EMEA Finance has named BNY Mellon ‘Best Transactional Bank for Financial Institutions in EMEA’.

The publication elaborated that as the marketplace rapidly evolves, BNY Mellon’s business proposition is one of partnership with best in class services on offer to financial institutions looking to differentiate themselves, and offer premium services.

Bana Akkad Azhari, head of relationship management CIS and MEA, treasury services explains that, “BNY Mellon’s unwavering strength in the transaction banking industry is built upon our exceptional client service, global reach and dedication to enhancing the client experience.”

The full article can be read here (subscription is required).

BNY Mellon’s Daniel Verbruggen joins the debate on the future of transaction banking in FX-MM

From managing the demands of regulatory compliance, to navigating the opportunities and threats presented by financial technology, it takes a lot to thrive in the fast-changing transaction banking sector.

FX-MM asks BNY Mellon’s Daniel Verbruggen, Head of Relationship Management Europe, Treasury Services, his thoughts on how blockchain and real-time payments hold the potential to forever alter the transaction banking landscape.

Verbruggen explains that “the digital revolution is well underway, and banks need to be at the forefront of innovation if they are to meet the evolving needs of the market and their clients. There are two fundamental elements that banks need to focus on when it comes to investment in new technologies: flexibility and client-centricity.”

The full article can be read here (subscription is required).

Digitalisation a “sleeping giant”: Commerzbank’s Angela Koll cited on the future of trade finance in TMI Magazine

Where’s next for the digitalisation of trade finance? Angela Koll, Commerzbank’s Specialist Trade & Supply Chain Finance, shares her thoughts in the latest edition of TMI Magazine, but warns that innovation in the industry could take time to spread.

Find out more in “Waking the Sleeping Giant? The Potential for Trade Finance Transformation“.

iGTB’s Herber de Ruijter discusses how banks can make the most of APIs

herberBanks should take the initiative with APIs, says iGTB’s Head of Digital, Herber de Ruijter, in the first of a series of blogs by iGTB in the lead-up to Sibos 2017.

New legislation requiring banks to share data with third-party providers through APIs comes into force in 2018, but it should be seen as an opportunity rather than a compliance burden. These data-sharing interfaces can transform bank-client relations, and banks that take this potential seriously will have a serious competitive edge over their peers.

From enhancing product offerings and cutting costs, to creating new revenue streams, the catalogue of benefits is extensive. Yet banks must also be aware of the possible pitfalls along the way – including the loss of human interaction and the risk of third-party products supplanting existing bank services.

When well- conceived and well designed, however, APIs can unlock huge benefits – revitalising the banking industry and it customer services.

To read the full piece, please click here.

Deutsche Bank’s Christian Schaefer assesses PSD2’s potential to enhance the European payments market in PaymentEye

The second “European Directive on Payment Services in the Internal Market”, commonly referred to as PSD2, has sparked discussion around its potential to further develop the European payments market. Speaking to PaymentEye, Christian Schaefer, Head of Payments, Cash Management Corporates, details how PSD2 will deliver these opportunities from its effective date in January 2018.

Along with extending the scope of services over which it will regulate, PSD2 will also strengthen customer authentication protocols. But arguably of most interest is the fact that PSD2 will permit select third party providers (TPPs) to deliver specific kinds of payment-related services. For Schaefer, this notable development recognizes “the importance of third-party providers to the payments landscape – creating a regulatory framework that enables secure collaboration between all players, and encourages innovation”.

As a result, it is believed that PSD2 marks a crucial step towards a more integrated payments industry that better leverages opportunities to innovate. Schaefer says: “PSD2 will encourage collaboration between the varied players across the financial landscape by recognising and regulating third-party providers – creating a secure and transparent environment for the creation of disruptive payments technology.”

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