Sibos 2022: a focus on financial inclusion and technological innovation

Alice Chambers
Alice Chambers
By Alice Chambers on 10 October 2022
Sibos 2022: a focus on financial inclusion and technological innovation

Swift’s chairman Yawar Shar opened the conference by reflecting on the sector’s adaptability and innovation

Sibos 2022 officially opened on 10 October 2022 by Yawar Shah, chariman of event organiser Swift, alongside guest speakers Queen Máxima of the Netherlands, Mairead McGuinness of the European Commission and Swift’s CEO Javier Pérez-Tasso.

“A lot has changed since our last meeting almost three years ago,” said Shar. “The global pandemic and current economic crisis have exemplified the finance sector’s adaptability and innovation.”

During his session, Shah focussed on strategy execution, continuous innovation and the future, all of which he argued can only be achieved by relying on the strength of the financial services community.

Queen Máxima then spoke about the importance of progressive finance, calling on her expertise as a trained economist and her role as honorary patron of the G20's Global Partnership for Financial Inclusion.

“Only 55 per cent of adults in developing countries have access to emergency funds,” said Queen Máxima on the need to help people get better access to finance. “The implementation of financial technology solutions will help to rapidly develop digital banking. I hope that we can use this conference to build a digital, sustainable and better economy for all.”

In addition, Mairead McGuinness, commissioner for financial services, financial stability and capital markets union at the European Commission, addressed the challenge of combatting the rising cost of fuel and reflected on the impact of the war on Ukraine.  

McGuiness discussed the numerous benefits of the digital economy, such as the ease of opening bank accounts, splitting bills and developing new business markets. However, she also highlighted that banks must combat the security challenges that inevitably arise with progress in financial technology. 

McGuiness also discussed the possibility of the digital euro and how principles for this will be developed by the end of 2023. “Together, we are designing the future of finance,” she said. 

Pérez-Tasso further commented on financial inclusion and the collaboration needed between financial technology companies for continual innovation. He said that the speed, cost, transparency and choice of access is what contributes towards a successful digital payment platform. He closed the opening session by highlighting the importance of putting innovative technology at the centre of financial services. “Technology is at its best when it brings people together,” he said. 

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