Abu Dhabi, Paris agreement could foster innovation in financial technology strategies

A joint partnership in international finance is coming from a slightly unusual place: the Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) and Paris EUROPLACE, which are poised to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on developing collaboration on joint financial activities and promoting symbiotic growth in the two national economies.

ADGM is an international finance center that works to support the capital city’s status as the major financial hub in the region. Paris EUROPLACE is a nonprofit organization that promotes economic development for the French economy. Both parties seem to have similar aims for their respective areas of representation, and now, officials are saying they might team up to figure out new ways to move forward in areas like green finance and Fintech, the new word for emerging aspects of the financial technology industry.

Although a July press release talks about plans to develop relevant activities and events that foster financial innovation and closer regulatory cooperation and to enable closer collaboration on possible joint financial activities and common interests, there are scant details on how this agreement will work and what will be accomplished.

"We are honored to reinforce the cooperation and business opportunities between Abu Dhabi and Paris financial marketplaces through this joint agreement.” Paris EUROPLACE CEO Arnaud de Bresson said in a press statement. “As the first financial marketplace of the Eurozone, Paris has strong strengths to share with Abu Dhabi. This agreement paves the way for concrete joint initiatives in the respective fields of expertise of each country."

Phillipe Richard is director of international affairs at ADGM’s Financial Services Regulatory Authority, the arm of the organization tasked with managing the agreement.

“With the newly minted MoU on 5 July, Paris EUROPLACE and ADGM will go into deeper collaborations and discussions.” Richard said in response to a set of interview questions last week. “The MoU establishes a platform for us to better understand and share relevant information on banking, financial services, securities legislation and regulations in each market.”

Richard said international investment may play a role in the collaborative activities that the two groups have planned.

“The agreement enables both authorities to explore mutually beneficial initiatives, including investment, Fintech, and possible cross-border investment activities in both financial centers.” Richard said.

While there is a lot of speculation on how the international banking world will handle new Fintech developments and technologies such as Bitcoin and Blockchain, as well as disruptors like Paypal, competing with big banks for transaction handling and deposit money, there’s a lot of potential in developing international programs to look closely at how finance is handled in a given country, so that, from the point of the federal regulators and economics departments, changes go smoothly. There’s also quite a bit of room for innovation as digital banking and other advances promote borderless societies.

However, when it comes to the new partnership between Abu Dhabi and Paris, officials involved in the new partnership are not releasing details at this time. ADGM officials declined additional comment.

“Details of these projects could be made available when appropriate.” Richard said.

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Abu Dhabi Global Market

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