The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) is to host the second edition of its Annual Customer Due Diligence and Corporate Governance Forum in Seychelles from 29 to 30 October in bid to build momentum for a collaborative African approach to addressing the unique challenges confronting African financial institutions in the field of corporate governance and customer due diligence.
The Forum, which is being organised in collaboration with the Central Bank of Seychelles, is expected to bring together bankers, corporate entities, regulators and representatives of financial institutions from Africa and beyond to hear expert presentations and participate in panel and open discussions on customer due diligence and corporate governance challenges faced by African institutions
“The scourge of financial crimes and the negative external perceptions they engender constitute a serious challenge to Africa’s ability to attract foreign investment. This Forum gives African financial institutions the platform to develop a collaborative approach to tackling the continent’s unique customer due diligence and corporate governance challenges in order to increase confidence and attract more foreign investment,” said Dr. Benedict Oramah, President of Afreximbank.
The Forum would give participants the capacity to conduct effective due diligence on their customers and would enhance the capacity of African financial institutions to develop robust corporate governance structures capable of combating the emerging challenges faced in the continent, added Dr. Oramah.
According to the President, lack of confidence in African institutions and poor corporate structures have been among the major reasons why many investors have tended to shy away from investing in the Continent.
“We hope that this event will open up more business opportunities whilst providing a platform for us to reflect on the efforts made within our jurisdictions to ensure the conduct of secure and ethical business activities,” said Caroline Abel, Governor of the Central Bank of Seychelles.
The Governor, who noted that the Central Bank of Seychelles and Afreximbank shared an interest in improving cross border collaboration within the African continent, said that the forum was expected to enable delegates enhance their understanding of the importance of good governance and customer due diligence in order to “improve their practice in line with international norms to develop our business landscape and attract further foreign direct investment to Seychelles”.
Jean Paul Adam, Minister of Finance, Trade and the Blue Economy of Seychelles is expected to chair the opening ceremony which is also expected to be attended by Caroline Abel, Governor, Central Bank of Seychelles, and other Seychellois dignitaries.
The participants are expected to proffer solutions for the identified challenges from an African perspective
This year’s Forum follows an initial edition held in Dakar from 28 to 29 October 2014 which led to the establishment of the African Customer Due Diligence Repository Platform (ACDIRP), a centralized source of customer due diligence information on African banks, financial institutions and corporate entities which would be available by subscription.
Manal Mounir Hendy