The regulatory landscape in the payments space has in the past few years seen new digital technologies giving rise to greater innovations. From cross-border and retail payments to central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) – regulators seem to have been more involved in the payments industry. To discuss the current role of regulators in the new digitally enhanced payments ecosystem, we at the Centre for Finance, Technology and Entrepreneurship (CFTE) were delighted to host a webinar on ‘Disrupting the Payments Industry’ along with the Central Bank of Hungary (MNB) and the Budapest Institute of Banking (BIB).
Leading experts from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), National Bank of Cambodia, Abu Dhabi Global Market and the Central Bank of Hungary – joined in to discuss the role of regulators in new digital ecosystem payments, the emerging innovations, and digital currency initiative through CBDCs. The speakers during the webinar included,
- Tram Anh Nguyen, Co-founder – CFTE
- Huy Nguyen Trieu, Co-founder – CFTE
- Gergely Fábián, Executive Director MNB – Central Bank of Hungary & CEO, Budapest Institute of Banking
- Fabian Vandenreydt, Senior Advisor – Abu Dhabi Global Market | Former Global Head of Securities Markets – SWIFT
- Serey Chea, Assistant Governor – National Bank of Cambodia
- Sopnendu Mohanty, Chief Fintech Officer – Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS)
A Synopsis of the Panel Discussion
During the panel discussion on ‘Disrupting the payments industry’, Huy Nguyen Trieu, Co-founder of CFTE mentioned how “payments for a very long time were an overlooked area in financial services”, as FinTech start-ups have had a huge impact on changing the narrative with companies such as Stripe, Square and Mollie. Payments have gone from overlooked to very hot in a short period of time.
The rise of desire to make payments seamless as non-bank players have taken advantage of the use of technology to capitalize on the consumer’s need for convenient and secure financial services through increased digital systems. This has led to increased involvement of regulators in promoting financial inclusion as Serey Chea, Assistant Governor – National Bank of Cambodia, mentions “after the 2008 financial crisis there was a post-crash increase in technology and innovation through promoting financial inclusion”.
Furthermore, as technology continues to play a pivotal role in the finance ecosystem, the development and changes have either improved or broken companies, businesses, and organizations. As panel member Tram Anh states, “technology is eating finance … through the disruptive methods which are taking place”. Further on, the panel highlighted the importance of understanding technology is a core skill in finance, as it can make one stand out from the rest of the crowd due to the quick transforming skills emerging in the finance industry which is now being heavily influenced by technology. Through understanding technologies such as:
– Machine Learning
– Application Programming Interface (API)
– Blockchain, and more
The emergence of new skills is continuously increasing in finance, as has the necessity to keep upskilling. Since automation and digitalisation through the impact of COVID-19 have had a significant impact on the acceleration in the use of technology in the payments industry, due to customers and finance professionals increasing switching to digital methods of conducting business and communication.