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UAE and South African bankers strengthen ties

Cass hosts third Annual BANKSETA delegation

Key players in the international banking sector met for a two day conference hosted by Cass Business School in Dubai, at the Dubai International Finance Centre (DIFC). 

The roundtable talks consisted of an overview of Islamic banking, and a more general look at banking culture in the region.

The United Arab Emirates equity markets came under particular scrutiny, following a fall in stock which saw a record breaking number of sell-offs earlier in the week. Predictions for the future performance of the UAE economy featured high up on the delegation agenda.

Guests included executives from South Africa's Banking Sector Education and Training Authority, (BANKSETA) and top ranking UAE officials. Mr Ammar Shams, Regional Head of Corporate Sustainability at HSBC was among those leading the discussions.

Also in attendance were Mr Pinaki Aich, Director-Strategy, Dubai International Financial Centre Authority; Mrs Aathira Prasad, Director at Nasser Saidi & Associates; Dr Sohail Zubairi, Chief Executive Officer, Dar Al Sharia Legal & Financial Consultancy LLC; and Mrs Makameh Afkhami Vice President, Head of Retail Strategy, Group Strategy, Emirates NBD.

Ehsan Razavizadeh, Cass Regional Director, MENA said: "We are delighted to welcome our colleagues from South Africa's banking centre to Dubai, one of the world's most vibrant and dynamic banking hubs. Dubai continues to attract a vast pool of skilled and multilingual talent from all over the world thanks to its strategic location as a hub for the Middle East, Africa and Asia region."

Working in partnership with Cass and the Wits Business School in South Africa, BANKSETA has gained a reputation for driving development in the financial services industry.

The organisation runs the International Executive Development Programme (IEDP) jointly with its partners. This programme seeks out promising talent in South Africa's banking and microfinance sectors and provides future leaders with support.

During the conference Max Makhubalo, BANKSETA CEO expressed a wish to continue to strengthen South Africa's commercial ties with the UAE.

He said: "Our 2013 visit to the DIFC remains a highlight of BANKSETA's annual calendar. On behalf of BANKSETA, I would like to thank Cass."

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