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Looking inside: HKIB conference to focus on how banks can build from within to capture new opportunities in China and further afield

Just as financial markets recover from the fallout of the Brexit vote in June, a historically volatile presidential election in the US looms on the horizon.

Yet for all the turmoil, Hong Kong’s financial sector has reason for guarded optimism, says Dr Patrick Fung, chairman of the executive committee of The Hong Kong Institute of Bankers (HKIB) and chairman of OCBC Wing Hang Bank.

The prospects and projects before Hong Kong’s banking industry will be explored at length at the HKIB Annual Banking Conference 2016, to be held on September 20 at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre.

Norman Chan, chief executive of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA), will deliver an opening keynote address outlining the authority’s view on Hong Kong as a financial hub.

“We are delighted to have Mr. Chan address our members, as the HKMA continues to set the highest standard for retail, commercial and investment banking,” Fung says.

Underneath the political headwinds, banking in Hong Kong and around the world is being reshaped by the advent of personal online banking services and commercial applications of financial technology, or “fintech”.

The key for banks to respond successfully to these external and systemic challenges will be their staff. In the conference’s opening CEO panel discussion, Weber Lo, country officer and CEO for Hong Kong and Macau at Citi; May Tan, CEO of Standard Chartered Bank (Hong Kong); and Paul Yang, head of Greater China and CEO of Hong Kong at BNP Paribas, will discuss how Hong Kong banks can retrain their existing staff to achieve sustainable competitiveness in a new era of digital banking services.

The expansion of Hong Kong’s trading link to include Shenzhen as well as Shanghai, combined with funding needs for China’s ambitious One Belt, One Road projects, are certain to create new opportunities for Hong Kong banks in China. In the second CEO panel discussion – hosted by Professor Ba Shusong, chief China economist at Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing – E Zhihuan, chief economist at Bank of China (Hong Kong) and Zhu Qi, CEO of Wing Lung Bank, will outline how banks can capitalise on these and other developments on the mainland.

Over 700 banking practitioners from mainland China, the US and Hong Kong are expected at the event. “Broad interest from across East Asia signals the importance of Hong Kong as a regional financial hub and as a connection point for investment into and out of China,” Fung says.

A major key to preserving Hong Kong’s role in the region and globally is the integrity of its markets and practitioners, Fung adds. In 2015,  the HKIB signed a memorandum of understanding with the Florida International Bankers Association (FIBA). Representing FIBA at the conference, Michael Silva, partner at DLP Piper, will talk about enhanced due diligence, the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) and the implications of the Panama Papers in an afternoon stream dedicated to risk management and compliance.

Cybersecurity is another area where HKIB has found a partner – the Hong Kong Computer Society (HKCS) – to improve its training. Leo Tong, vice chairperson of HKCS’s financial technologies special interest group and general manager of Wellchamp Capital, will host a discussion on the innovations needed to keep banks relevant to a new generation of clients.

“As with all aspects of the financial services, protecting our customers’ interests and investments is paramount,” Fung says. “Specialist partnerships provide Hong Kong’s financial community access to a wealth of information to offer clients the best in service and technology.”


HKIB Annual Banking Conference 2016 Highlights



Building Capacity to Capture Emerging Opportunities


Date and time

September 20, 9am-5.15pm



Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, Wan Chai


Keynote speech

Norman Chan, chief executive, Hong Kong Monetary Authority


CEO panel discussions

- Building Capacity for Sustainable Growth

- Identifying and Capturing Emerging Opportunities


Afternoon streams

- Banking Business

- Fintech Innovation

- Risk Management and Compliance