There is need to continuously improve the legal framework in order to address electronic transaction issues that continue to arise with the passage of time.
This was said by Mr. Humphrey Muturi, Executive Director, Ecobank Kenya & Cluster Head of Commercial Banking during the annual East Africa Trade and Commodity Finance Conference held in Nairobi themed Digital Innovation in Cash Management and Trade Finance (focusing on Central, Eastern and Southern African economies). The event also discussed the disruptive impact of technology on the financial sector.
“Both governments and traders will however have to build a framework for the harmonization of national ICT policies and regulatory frameworks. In addition there is need to establish open standards, promote interoperability and interconnectivity. Additional investment in ICT infrastructure is also required to increase access to the internet across the continent,” said Mr. Muturi.
Speaking on the same, Ecobank’s Group Head of Research Mr. Edward George, said that while the value of Intra-Africa Trade is estimated at 15%, the large volumes of informal trade within the continent and more so among border communities needs to be formalized to enable the continent realize its trade potential. This is all set to change with the emergence of the digital economy and mobile payment platforms.
The event also saw Ecobank Executives demonstrate the different Ecobank digital platforms that enable its customers trade across the continent to tackle the increasing need for regional payment factories, regional collections, electronic bill presentment and settlement as well as 24/7 availability.
“Traditional barriers to trade in developing countries such as poor infrastructure, inefficient logistics, money transfer costs, delays in settlements and distance to market are being overcome as the Internet and associated technology allows for products to be developed and delivered online.” Ecobank Kenya / East Africa Cluster Head for Trade Sales, Michael Gichure said.
To address these barriers, Ecobank demonstrated the capability of its electronic finance supply chain (eFSC) platform primarily geared towards its corporate and commercial customers. This enables clients to fully digitize their procurement cycle from order to cash. The platform facilitates both domestic and cross border trade transactions and is an additional functionality to Ecobank’s award winning electronic banking platform, Omni.
This comes shortly after Ecobank launched its Mobile App and Masterpass QR code, reinforcing the Bank’s strategic focus on digitization.
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