Financial interaction: the role of financial centers in the 21st century. The title of a panel session of the Astana International Financial Centre (AIFC) was held during the Astana Economic Forum - 2019 (AEF-2019).
The speakers were AIFC Governor Kairat Kelimbetov, Director for Macroeconomic Policy and Financing for Development of UNESCAP Hamza Ali Malik, Executive Director of Europack Yuliya Kushidi, Head of Global Practice PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) in providing services to government agencies and the public sector, PwC partner in the UAE Hazem Galal, President of Hamad Bin Khalifa University, Doha, Qatar Ahmad M. Hasna, as well as Registrar of Court of AIFC and International Arbitration Centre Christopher Campbell-Holt. The session was moderated by the head of the BBC World News regional offices in Eurasia, Sergei Stanovkin.
The main issues of the session were the opportunities and risks of the integration processes of development of the financial sector in the region and the impact of current trends in world markets on the strategic development of financial centres.
“Our main priority is to create a comfortable environment for investors: a regulatory environment similar to other international jurisdictions, a technology platform with industry standard protocols. Together with Kazakh Invest, comprehensive support is provided to foreign investors and enterprises seeking to benefit from a progressive, business-friendly environment in Kazakhstan,” - noted the AIFC Governor.
They also discussed ways in which financial centres can attract investment flows and establish themselves as a regional leader and international centre for the revival of the economy of the New Silk Road.
Experts noted that regional integration is an important component for Eurasia. At the same time, Kazakhstan, located at the intersection of the main Eurasian routes, may become a new regional centre. Also, given that at the moment competition often takes place not between countries, but between financial hubs, the role of regional financial services centres should be to connect East and West and promote common development, the speakers emphasized.