Afreximbank President Jean-Louis Ekra addressing the press following the opening of the Forum in Dakar
The increasing costs confronted by African banks and financial institutions in complying with the constantly evolving compliance regulations imposed by the principal international financial centres has made it necessary to find standardized Africa-specific solutions to challenges in the financial services sector, Jean-Louis Ekra, President of the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank), has told the first-ever Customer Due Diligence and Corporate Governance Forum organized by the Bank.
Addressing the opening of the Forum, which is being attended by African bankers, representatives of financial institutions, corporates, and regulators, Mr. Ekra noted in the face of that compliance regime, many international banks had ended their activities considered to be high risk, with significant negative impact on Africa.
Many had also discontinued normal correspondent banking relationships with African clients, making it extremely difficult for those African businesses to engage in international trade, he continued, adding that the Forum had been created to enable participants to develop African solutions to those problems.
In the plenary session following the opening ceremony, participants heard presentations on the key aspects of corporate governance and due diligence from representatives of the International Finance Corporation, the Banque Atlantique and the Groupe Intergouvernemental d’Action contre le Blanchiment d’Argent.
Subsequent general sessions focused on customer due diligence in Africa and on solutions for Africa.
The Forum will continue tomorrow with discussions on the issue of corporate governance.
The two-day Afreximbank Customer Due Diligence and Corporate Governance Forum is being organised in collaboration with Banque Centrale des Etats de l’Afrique de l’Ouest, the Government of Senegal, and CISSCORP Holding International, a Senegal-based consulting firm.
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