Regulatory responses to platform and gig economies and how they could shape future commerce are among the focal topics of a two-day training for AFI member institutions that kicked-off on July 4 in collaboration with global payments platform Visa.
Visa is a long-term partner of AFI through its Public-Private Dialogue (PPD), a platform where public and private stakeholders exchange knowledge, expertise and experiences to advance financial inclusion.
During his opening speech, AFI Director of Strategy & Financial Inclusion Policy Kennedy Komba reiterated the importance of partnering with key private sector players, explaining that they bring a breadth of knowledge on fast-paced disruptive technologies that exists largely outside the public sector.
“We’ve seen these platforms drive economies, but now we also need to listen and participate in them to ensure that the markets are safe, not just for financial inclusion but for the economy as a whole,” he said.
The event follows three days of member training conducted by Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) and AFI on the potential use of platform economies – online networks that facilitate economic and social interactions between people – as catalysts of financial inclusion.
“Platform and gig economies are very relevant and timely,” Visa Head of Global Key Clients and AP Government Engagement Learning Pauline Sahetapy said during her welcoming remarks.
Demand for the both training sessions has been high, with nearly 60 participants attending from 40 AFI member institutions in 37 countries. Member training on topics related to digital financial services (DFS) tend to be among the most in-demand, which is reflected in the fact that roughly a quarter of policy changes implemented by members and more than half of this year’s AFI capacity building events relate to DFS.
Sahetapy acknowledged that while the understanding of such emerging technologies remains in the early stages, the PPD training will provide regulators with the opportunity to “get a sense of what’s going on [with platform and gig economies] … and bring it back to financial inclusion”.
Representatives from some of Visa’s FinTech partners – global technology giant Google, money services business Merchantrade and games company Razer – were also invited to lead a panel discussion and share their expertise on online payment systems as well as regulatory and infrastructural challenges.
AFI’s Komba ended his speech by thanking Visa, BNM and the participants for their hard work in recent days. Underscoring the importance of their contributions, he said: “We have this saying in Swahili which means, ‘in an event, it’s people’ and you are the people”.
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