BNY Mellon’s Bana Akkad Azhari discusses how bank-fintech collaboration is creating opportunities for trade in the Middle East in Cash and Trade

Recent years have heralded a new, dynamic “fintech era”. Global investment in fintech has skyrocketed in recent years, yet, the vast majority of fintech investment originates from other regions, with the Middle East only accountable for 0.1% of the global total in 2016. However, fintech companies are increasingly looking at how new innovations can improve operations across the financial landscape in the Middle East and – specifically – how technological offers can enhance trade in the region.

In Cash and Trade, Bana Akkad Azhari, Head of Sales & Relationship Management MEA and the CIS, Treasury Services EMEA, BNY Mellon, considers how local banks are playing a growing role in the exploration of digital solutions. By adopting various collaborative approaches – including venture capital-style investment and incubator/accelerator programmes – banks and fintechs are working together to help improve security, transparency, and efficiency for trade in the Middle East.

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