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Mar 12, 2020

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Arise conference explores does growth in banking lead to economic development?

Arise hosted its fourth investment conference in Cape Town from 17 – 18 February 2020. “The aim of this annual event is to provide a collaborative platform to facilitate knowledge exchange and information sharing amongst Arise’s partner banks and key industry role-players in the global and local financial services sector”, said Arise CEO, Deepak Malik.

“Themed Does growth in banking lead to economic development? the conference was characterised by phenomenal industry speakers, who provided insight into the correlation between banking development and economic growth on the continent”, he said. Keynote speakers on the first day included former CEO of Standard Bank Africa, Chris Newson, who provided insight into the challenges that the banking industry in Africa faces. Topics that were explored included whether banks have the right lending initiatives, credit processes and skills in place to advance economic development.

Another critical issue that came under the spotlight was the advent of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and automation and its impact on job creation. CEO of Terraflow AI, Brett St Claire’s session covered how banks can balance the double-edged sword of technology and job creation in an African context. On the cards was also Lead Analyst Africa from S&P Global, Samira Mensah, who explored the rise in national debt on African economies including the exposure of banks. Closing off the conference on the first day was Regional Director, Southern Africa and Nigeria, International Finance Corporation (IFC), Kevin Njiraini, who critically looked at the role of foreign Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) in promoting the banking sector in Africa.

The second day of the conference provided a platform for our partner banks like Ecobank (Togo), Equity Bank (Kenya), dfcu Bank (Uganda), NMBZ (Zimbabwe) and NMB (Tanzania) to share how they are advancing economic growth in their respective economies.  A highlight on the second day was the panel discussion on banking in turbulent times and how NMBZ Bank has managed to remain relevant in a Zimbabwean context. Concluding the second day was the Founder of Startupbootcamp AfriTech, Zachariah George, who discussed the importance of investing in SME -based technologies and start-ups to spur economic growth and job creation in Africa.

The event was a great success with more than 140 delegates in attendance from across the globe and the African continent.

To view the presentations, click here

To view the photo gallery, click here

To view the highlights video click here

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