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Kenya to host regional bankers

NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 8- Nairobi will next month host a regional banking conference which will also be used as a platform to showcase the mobile payments innovations currently being implemented in Africa.

Top dignitaries including Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Uhuru Kenyatta and Central Bank of Kenya Governor Professor Njuguna Ndung’u are expected at the annual Banking and Mobile Money Conference organised by AITEC Africa.

“When we started this conference series four years ago, the emphasis was on East Africa learning from the rest of the world. Now bankers, mobile operators and others wanting to learn about mobile banking will be coming to Nairobi to learn from innovators in the region,” said AITEC Chairman Sean Moroney while announcing the February 24-25 conference.

The event will have 19 specialised sessions over the two days, with over 70 speakers from 14 countries. Session topics will range from ‘Compliance and risk management in the post-meltdown world’ to ‘Interbank payment reforms – new transaction and settlement systems’.

“We are assembling a faculty of banking, microfinance and mobile payment experts with an unparalleled level of expertise. The speakers will be sharing their knowledge with financial service professionals from throughout the COMESA region.”

Mr Moroney said the event will include a specialized exhibition on products and services for the financial services sector, with over 40 local and international exhibitors.

“Supporting organisations for the event include the Kenya Bankers Association, the Consultative Group for Advancing the Poor (CGAP) and the Kenya ICT Board. CGAP is holding a workshop on management systems for microfinance institutions, linked to the conference. The Gates Foundation will hold a breakfast briefing for bank CXOs during the conference on providing banking services for the unbanked,” the chairman further disclosed.

Mr Moroney said the forum will also provide an opportunity for Nairobi to showcase its potential as a top conference destination and a financial services hub.

“The conference will play an important role in reinforcing Nairobi’s role as the region’s financial services centre, and the theme ‘Leadership through Innovation’ reflects the country’s leadership position in mobile banking,” he added.

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