‘Asia now faces challenge of shifting from old drivers of growth to new ones’

The importance of innovation and technological improvements in the banking sector in addressing the broader market needs and tapping into the opportunities in the ‘new normal’ was highlighted by HNB’s Managing Director and CEO, Jonathan Alles and Chairman of the Asian Bankers Association’s at their 37th General Meeting and Conference.

Inaugurating the event and addressing the virtual gathering, Alles highlighted the critical role that banks have played, in supporting economic recovery post-COVID-19. “We need to jointly break new ground in innovation-driven development. After years of fairly fast growth, Asian countries now face the challenge of shifting from old drivers of growth to new ones and we must rely on innovation to foster this transition. As the new round of global technological revolution and industrial transformation unfolds, we must seize opportunities to tap into our advantages in human capital and market potential, to intensify cooperation on innovation and accelerate the upgrading of the banking sector.”

“Today, banks across the globe are working as a de facto delivery system, delivering cash for those in need. However, with no clear end in sight and the virus still rampant, banks are acutely aware that how they respond to the crisis now will determine how they will rebuild for the future,” he said. “Providing support to governments and customers is crucial during this crisis, but this will require banks to deploy the tools that they have developed since the 2008 Global Financial Crisis, to lead a coherent and extensive response to unchartered territory. One thing is certain: a strong banking sector will be fundamental to a strong recovery.”

While initially planned to be hosted in Sri Lanka, this year’s event is now hosted virtually until August 27, 2021, on the theme: ‘Asian Banks: Achieving Sustainable Growth in the New Normal’ and is attended by some of the most important figures in banking across the Asian region.

Alles will not be the only Sri Lankan banking sector professional who will be sharing his insights with the region’s banking sector leaders at the event, which has a strong focus on responding to the changes induced by the pandemic and on technology/innovation. HNB Executive Director and Chief Operation Officer, Dilshan Rodrigo will also be serving as session chair for the ‘Regulator Roundtable’ session on current banking trends and their implications on regulatory policies which will also feature Dharmasri Kumaratunge, Director Payments and Settlements of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL). In addition, Jonathan Alles will serve as a panellist at the CEO roundtable on ‘navigating the new world order’.

by Daily News Sri Lanka

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