Thursday, 5 October 2017

CHAIRMAN'S MESSAGE - Sean Edwards, ITFA Chairman / Head of Legal at SMBC

Dear Members and Friends,

Believe it or not, we’re already approaching the end of October and we’ve entered the final stretch of 2017. If memories of our sTand-out Edinburgh conference are starting to fade (but how could the image of so many men in kilts ever fade?) rest assured that next year’s conference in Cape Town will be an equally glorious experience. Planning has started in earnest with registration opening much earlier than usual.

ITFA is privileged to count most of the major Chinese banks as its members (and they were out in force in Edinburgh) so developments in that country are always of particular interest to us. Recently S&P lowered China’s long-term sovereign rating to A+ from AA-, citing that the prolonged period of low credit growth imposes risk on the country’s economic growth. 

One of the criticisms ratings agencies are usually faced with is the lag in their actions. It is a known fact that China's debt has been accumulating over the past years and thus a ratings downgrade on such rationale could have been announced earlier. However, S&P cited in its report that China’s monetary policy is largely credible and effective - implying that in case of need, monetary politicians will adjust policy accordingly. China still has a huge potential over the longer-term, primarily driven by domestic demand which means that growth should be sustainable going forwards. However, the reverberations of a Chinese downgrade is yet to be quantified, not on the sovereign per se but on the larger Emerging Market issuers.

On a more jovial note, in this month’s Newsletter, TFR Editor-in-Chief, Katharine Morton, summarises her experience at the ITFA Annual Conference describing it as ''a Little Bit of Magic''. Also, TXF Editor-in-chief, Jonathan Bell, discusses one of the hot topics addressed during the ITFA Annual Conference ''Digitisation of Receivables: In the Spotlight at ITFA Edinburgh Conference''. Another interesting article is the introduction of one of the new ITFA Board Members, Duarte Pedreira - ITFA Head of Young Professionals and African Committee. ITFA is pleased to announce two new institutions joining as ITFA members - CCR Manager and LiquidX Inc. Our regular feature - Chart of the Month, contributed by Dr. Rebecca Harding of Equant Analytics looks at ''the aftermath of Germany’s election: how does trade help?''

May I remind you all that with the Christmas season just around the corner, the ITFA Board is pleased to invite all ITFA members to attend our annual ITFA Christmas Cocktail Party. In the coming days each member organisation will be receiving the invite, so we would greatly appreciate if the you could RSVP by latest 01 December 2017 (more details on this are at the end of this newsletter). As always, we encourage you all to attend this valuable networking opportunity, so please…save the date! May we kindly point out that this event is strictly for ITFA members only and access to the event is restricted to confirmed guests only.

We look forward to hearing from you with any feedback you may want to share with us by sending an email to myself, any of the Board Members or to our general email,

Best wishes,

Sean Edwards

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