Indian Banks Association (IBA) hosted their 18th Annual Banking Technology Conference, Expo and Awards on the theme of “Future of Digital & Analytics in Banking”. The conference was presided over by Chief Guest Shri Ajay Kumar Choudhary (Executive Director, RBI), Shri Atul Kumar Goel (Chairman, IBA, and MD & CEO, Punjab National Bank), Shri Sunil Mehta (Chief Executive, IBA), and Shri Gopal Murli Bhagat (Dy. Chief Executive, IBA), in the presence of senior dignitaries and officials from public and private sector banks, fintech and technology experts, panelists, knowledge partners, and media.
Welcoming the participants in his inaugural address, Shri Sunil Mehta, Chief Executive, Indian Banks Association, said: “Banking Technology has evolved during the course of the year. There has been a traditional shift from brick-and-mortar to digital banking. It would not be a surprise to see the lending business move towards the digital sphere in the next three-four years. We thank the regulators and the government towards our sector with initiatives such as RBI Innovation Hub, Sandbox, UPI, among others, that have helped both the bankers and customers in reaching cost-effective solutions for financial services.”
Emphasizing on the three pillars of banking, Shri Atul Kumar Goel, Chairman, Indian Banks Association, and MD & CEO, Punjab National Bank, said: “The spectrum of banking industry is massive and with the integration of technology, it is imperative we adopt the new digital banking culture in this multi-functional collaborative environment. Digitalization has not only helped increase operational efficiency but has also helped increase customer delight. Going forward, we need to focus on innovation in technology and co-create net solutions through simplification and integration in the banking sphere. We also need to reskill and upskill employees, and bring innovative HR policies to retain talent in our industry.”
Chief Guest Shri Ajay Kumar Choudhary, Executive Director, RBI, in his keynote address said: “The best way to predict the future is to create it. As we move towards AI, ML, and cloud computing, the future of digitalization and digitization with analytics is going to be phenomenal. The definition of banking is changing as it is happening in silos across products and services. We need to foster innovation through upskilling our skills in this conducive environment and industry participants should focus on collaboration for enhanced customer experience. The adoption of new-age technology – REGTECH – will immensely help financial institutions with regulatory governance and risk management. Having said that, prime importance to customer redressal should also be given and protect customers against monetary loss through cyber incidents. Sustainability and inclusion are core factors for the growth of a nation and innovative products from new fintech players act as a bridge to reach out to the financially excluded. In fact, the advent of fintech players and smartphones has led to immense growth in customer acquisition. It is important that core banking is integrated with technology and adequate safeguards are implemented when outsourcing so that the banking industry is not at risk. RBI emphasizes on digitalization and is looking at ways towards faster and cost-effective tools for industry to adopt.”
Thanking the participants and giving an overview of the panel discussions, Shri Gopal Murli Bhagat, Dy. Chief Executive, Indian Banks Association said: “We are in an advanced stage of banking when compared to other developed countries.”
The conference was followed by panel discussions on the topics of “Leveraging full potential of cloud and core infrastructure for a modern digital bank”, “Fintechs – collaborate, partner, or compete with disruptors”, “Building next-gen open banking leveraging India stack – AAS, ONDC, OCEN; reflections from innovators & early adopters”, “Driving growth in credit penetration through digital lending”, and “Driving next s-curve of growth by transitioning to tech-enabled banking”.
Felicitating the winners of IBA Banking Technology Awards 2022, Shri T Rabi Sankar, Deputy Governor, Reserve Bank of India, said: “India is the third largest fintech ecosystem after US and China. The innovation index of India has jumped substantially from 81 to 40. By 2030, it is expected that India will have 1.3billion internet users and that could be possible due to the high mobile penetration and basic infrastructure being built by the government. The evolution of Banking & IT is a historical process where banks have always risen to challenges. Banking is essentially about the services related to deposits, lending, and payments, and it will continue in the future. Banks should not consider fintechs as competitors; instead they must rethink how the business of banking is performed, how traditional and digital methods of financial services are being carried out, and how the business will exist in future. Banks must adapt to digital technology. UPI is a good example to understand how alert banks ought to be. When disruptive or revolutionary technology comes, it should be incorporated from either collaboration, adoption, or integration aspect. We have to adapt at this stage of financial history and see how technology is evolving and changing our system. The future is digital and analytics in banking.”
The deputy governor of RBI also briefly spoke about cryptocurrencies and the launch of the first pilot of retail digital rupee. He said, “Private currencies showed digitalizing currencies can have benefits. If someone says digitizing currencies is beneficial for a payment ecosystem, we will facilitate it, prepare the infrastructure, and wait for it to grow. The motto of banks should be private money in the modern age should be only bank money.”
Awards were given in various segments of banks viz, Public Sector, Private Sector, Foreign Banks, Co-operative Banks, RRBs, SFB/Payment Banks in seven categories – Best Technology Bank, Best Technology Talent, Best IT & Risk Management, Best AI/ML Adoption, Best Fintech Collaboration, Best Financial Inclusion, and Best Digital Engagement .
The IBA Banking Technology Conference and Expo offer Banks a platform where they meet technology vendors and understand the latest trends in Banking Technology. On the other hand, it also helps vendors to understand the specific needs of the Indian Banks and develop products for the Indian Market.