Monday, June 17, 2024

EXCLUSIVE: Hot Topics From The Singapore FinTech Festival 2021

This year’s Singapore FinTech Festival, organised by the Monetary Authority of Singapore, marks the 6th anniversary of the festival and yet another example of exciting opportunities, insights and innovation emerging from the Singaporean FinTech community. With this year’s theme for Singapore Fintech Festival 2021 being the impact of Web 3.0 on financial services, there was much discussion about the rapid development of the ecosystem at play (amid the mountains of self promotional adverts on show too!) With this in mind, the FF News team wants to present each of our nominated ‘must-watch’ talks that we thought stood out amongst a sea of impressive discussions.

Beren’s Top Pick: Greener AI – The Impact of AI on the Environment:

  • David Patterson – Software Engineer & Professor Emeritus, Google.
  • Daniel Kiler – President, Arabesque Holding.
  • Bruno Sanchez-Andrade Nuno – Planetary Computer Program Director, Microsoft.

Artificial intelligence has become a topic on everyone’s minds; a subject of discussion that shows no signs of slowing down. And on that same hand, global warming and climate change are also a hot topic. AI, the machine learning model, and the hardware used all have been contributing to climate change in massive ways. Just as we could talk about cryptocurrency’s carbon footprint, we have to talk about AI’s too.

We can’t pin down the cause of this to a singular problem. David Patterson highlights the energy efficiency in particular; places like Oklahoma are perfect to put data centers in due to the vast amounts of renewable energy, while places like Singapore have a massive carbon footprint. Companies like Microsoft and Google have pledged towards a path of being carbon free. It seems crazy, but Microsoft is even looking at ways to create data centers out of algae and sea-related materials. We have to look towards efficiency in everything we do, we have to look towards better models (such as cloud computing), and we have to look towards discarding the outdated frameworks that only hinder us in our journey towards sustainability.

We’re not there yet, but the future is promising in terms of solutions.

Joe’s Top Pick: The Future of Money, Finance and the Internet:

  • Ravi Menon – Managing Director, Monetary Authority of Singapore.

When looking at the future of money, finance or the internet, it is hard to look at each completely isolated from the others. The influence they have on each other is undeniable and as technology develops in each sector the three become more entwined everyday. ‘The future of money is upon’ us as Ravi Menon, Managing Director of the Monetary of Singapore, illuminates through an interesting talk on the evolutions of digital money from cryptocurrency to stablecoin to CBDC’s. Ravi gives valuable insight into not just where he’s these concepts going but how they are going to get there and the preparations being made by MAS such as the beginning of project Orchid, a project designed to build the tech infrastructure and technical competencies which are necessary to issue a Singapore Dollar should Singapore decide to do so.

As we enter the Web 3.0 era, the future possibilities of the internet seem limitless, and the focus on Green Finance becomes ever present. Ravi discusses the future of Green Finance and MAS’ own Project Greenprint, a technology and data platform to support Asia and Singapore’s green finance ecosystem. Ravi also took some time to discuss MAS’ pledge to develop 4 interoperable platforms under platform Greenprint, ranging from a common disclosure portal for financial institutions to make reliable and comparable ESG disclosures to data orchestrators to aggregate ESG data. Within the context of industry collaboration through technology and data sharing platforms becoming an important driver of innovation in the future of finance Ravi sheds light on how projects such as Greenprint are only the beginning in both the future of Green Finance, but finance in general.

Bobby’s Top Pick – Blockchain and its Power to Impact on Inclusion:

  • Alejandro Pardo Vegezzi, LACChain Leader and IDB Lab Principal Specialist

This talk powerfully demonstrated the extraordinary potential for blockchain technology to give access to financial and non financial services, provide digital identity and health and social support to vulnerable populations excluded from the formal system.

Before, blockchain was only for cryptocurrency. But now, it is becoming available for the real world, fully compliant with regulatory requirements. Blockchain has extraordinary potential for market transformation and social impact due to its ability to make markets more efficient for providing goods and services. To list just a few, LACChain have been using blockchain technology to:

  • Provide digital money for vulnerable populations in Argentina
  • Digitise cash transfers in Panama
  • Run the DAVID 19 programme which supports health systems in Peru
  • Issue portable digital diplomas for university students in the Caribbean with a tremendous potential to scale up throughout the Latin America region too.

With the LACChain network, 1,621,406 people have benefited. This impact is incredibly powerful, and has resulted in the Global Alliance for the Development of the Blockchain Ecosystem in Latin America and the Caribbean, and will hopefully cause more support, inclusion and diversity in all ecosystems.

  1. AAZZUR Invited to Pitch at Mastercard Fintech Forum 2024 Read more
  2. Bybit Card Brings Apple Pay to Customers Read more
  3. Nexi and Engineering Group: NOVA, Advanced Digital Banking Platform, is Born Read more
  4. ING Nederland Makes Carbon Footprint Insight Available to All Customers Read more
  5. Personetics Recognized by Celent as a Global Leader in Personal Financial Engagement (PFE) for Retail Banking Read more