CHAIRMAN’S MESSAGE – Sean Edwards, ITFA Chairman / Head of Legal and Special Adviser to the Global Trade Finance Department at SMBC, June 2023

Dear Members and Friends,

I hope this message finds you in good health and high spirits. As we kick off another month, I am delighted to bring you our monthly newsletter, aimed at keeping you updated on the latest developments and activities within our association.

Let me start with a brief summary of the key subjects raised during the all-members call we held during in June. (For those members who could not join us to click here and view the recording).  This was a highly informative session where we discussed various crucial matters concerning ITFA – I’ll admit that even I learnt a few things!  Firstly, our board members highlighted their respective areas’ latest achievements and shared their plans for the coming year shedding light on the exciting developments awaiting you as valued members of our association.  Secondly, we discussed membership fees as well as held a vote targeted at helping us decide the location for next year’s annual conference, which will mark our 50th! So, expect an even bigger event!!

Back to June, following last year’s success, we held the ITFA Insurance Awards Ceremony, for the second time running.  A well-attended event hosted by ITFA at the premises of Crédit Agricole CIB in Montrouge, France. May I take the opportunity to congratulate all the winners as well as all the participants.

Looking ahead, July will be quite busy with events. We start off with 2 webinars forming part of an interesting series being organised by ITFA’s Africa Regional Committee. The session will be held on 5th July and is open for members and non. Please click here for more info and to be able to register your interest.

For the first time ever, we will also be organising an ITFA week in July, where we will have 3 consecutive events. We kick off on Tuesday 11th July with a whole day of education covering the basics of trade finance. The course will be taught by members of the Board and some guest speakers. Some more places available, see here.

We follow up on Wednesday with the second in our DNI series to be held at SMBC in London. We’ll be investigating the tremendous opportunities now open to our business and industry through the digitisation of trade instruments. Legal and regulatory reform is allowing this to happen and a cohort of ITFA fintechs are providing the systems and technology to make possibility a reality. You’ll be hearing from those who have already done it, in line with ITFA’s ethos of actionable and implementable solutions. For more details see here.

We top things off with our Annual Summer Seminar and Reception at Bank of China. Click here for more info.

The biggest event on our horizon is, of course, our 49th Annual Conference. With already 200+ plus registrations, we anticipate the event to be hugely attended, hence we urge you to save your spot and register at your earliest to avoid disappointment.  More can be found here

I would like to once again extend our appreciation to this year’s sponsors. We are proud to announce that we have achieved a record number of sponsors, which is a testament to the support and recognition ITFA consistently receives for its meaningful contributions to the market. If you or your organisation are interested in sponsoring our event, please click here for more information or contact us via email at

In this month’s newsletter, you can read more about the unfolding economic situation and the outlook for Turkey, an after-event report on our successful Americas Regional Conference in Miami, our contribution to the ESG debate in Africa delivered to GTR Nairobi and, finally, the continuing importance of DLT to trade finance.

Lastly we are thrilled to announce that the following institutions have joined our ever-growing association – Banco Micro Capital Limited, Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA),Pelican AI and UK Export Finance (UKEF).

I encourage you to take the time to read through this newsletter, keeping an eye out for exciting announcements, upcoming events, and opportunities for involvement. Your feedback and suggestions are invaluable to us, and we welcome your active participation in shaping the direction of our organisation.

Stay connected with us on LinkedIn for instant updates on upcoming events.

Happy summer!

Best wishes

Sean Edwards

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