BankservAfrica is a key participant at this year’s global financial industry forum, Sibos, to not only take Africa payments systems learnings to a global community, but to also better understand how other developing economies are embracing digital transformation and modernisation in the payments industry.
Hosted in Toronto, Canada from 16-18 October 2017, Sibos is the global financial services annual networking event organised by SWIFT, connecting more than 8,000 executives, decision makers and thought leaders from across the industry.
As Africa’s trusted automated payments clearing house, BankservAfrica has for the last four decades played a crucial role in enabling simplicity in the payments industry, processing billions of trusted payment transactions per year. Now with the modernisation of payment systems, as well as the growing need to build future digital payments infrastructures, BankservAfrica is looking to leverage the Sibos platform, to create a better view of how systems around the world are evolving to become more inclusive of new payment methods and unbanked communities.
“Sibos provides a rich environment to tap into the best new payments thinking, get a view of new technologies and understand how other countries are addressing the modernisation of payments infrastructure and the future of payments,” says Chris Hamilton, CEO at BankservAfrica. “Given its enormous size and diversity, Africa is not well represented at Sibos. BankservAfrica can fly the African flag, as well as provide a connection point for African countries to engage with global payments thinking and the Fintech community at large.”
According to Hamilton, some of the trends to watch at Sibos include the increasingly integrated, holistic approach to modernising national payments infrastructure; new developments in cyber security and cyber risk; and how to build payments systems that promote financial inclusion and harness the transformative power of the mobile phone.
BankservAfrica has just completed a joint study with the Payments Association of South Africa into payments modernisation. It highlights the needs for Southern Africa, in common with other countries, to prepare for the emerging digital and mobile economy with next generation payments infrastructure.
“While a good payments system can’t by itself give you a great economy, you can’t have a great economy unless you have a good payments system,” adds Hamilton. “The basic architecture of the South African payments system was laid down in the 80s, and while it might still be considered the best in Africa and one of the best in the world, the future is rapidly approaching - we need to be ready for it. In Africa, this means addressing the key issue of our time: how to bring the underbanked community into the mainstream economy.”
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