The Bahrain Chapter of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (BCICAI) under the patronage of the Ministry of Finance, Kingdom of Bahrain hosted a regional conference Financial Professionals- Partners in Nation Building on 30th April and 1st May 2014 at Ritz Carlton Hotel, Bahrain.Dr. R. Seetharaman, CEO of Doha Bank participated in the event on 1st May 2014 and spoke on Future of Banking in 2020 .The event was attended by regional bankers and senior finance professionals from various industries
Speaking at the conference Dr. R. Seetharman highlighted the changing trends in Global economy He said US economy is recovering and Euro Area and UK indicate signs of recovery. There is slower growth in emerging economies however they still contribute to global growth. There is increasing global attention in developing Asian region. There are growing voices of emerging economies and their demand for more equitable positions. Removing bottlenecks of global trade liberalization and enabling all countries to participate in Global economy is the biggest challenge for all countries. The use of Yuan has been increasing with China having a programme to internationalise its currency by allowing the Yuan to be used to settle cross-border trade. There are evolving partnerships amongst countries to cope up with global competitiveness and threats.
Dr. R. Seetharaman gave insights on changing trends impacting financial services industry. He said The regulatory realignment is happening in the financial services industry. The costs of regulation and competitive pressures will lead to industry consolidation. The need to improve scale advantages, spread increasing regulatory costs over a larger base of business, and lower costs by improving efficiencies will result in more mergers, acquisitions and industry consolidation. Through partnerships and collaboration, smaller and mid-sized players will provide the breadth and depth of services customers require at an affordable cost. Nontraditional competitiors will occupy a significant space in the financial services industry. Some of the non- traditional players in financial services industry include Walmart, Virgin money, Deutsche Postbank AG and UK post office.
Dr. R. Seetharaman highlighted the emerging trends in banking industry. He said The old attitude which centred on traditional banking services, proprietary products and less differentiation is shifting towards a new attitude in which we analyse needs and differentiate, collaborate and diversify. There is shift from product focused, location centric approach to consumer focused and information centric approach. The expanding business domains results in value creation to customers such as one stop shop, tailor made products, better service, seamless integration with banking products and cost reduction.