The annual meeting of the Institute of International Finance (IIF) took place this week in Marrakech, Morocco, bringing together representatives from across the finance industry.  As chair of the IIF, Ana Botín, opened the event by discussing some of the important challenges facing society with the IIF’s CEO, Tim Adams. 

The IIF’s Annual Membership Meeting is a key event in the finance calendar, offering a platform for central bankers, policymakers and leading executives to discuss some of the most pressing issues in the finance sector: from the tightening monetary conditions and the turbulence in the financial markets, to how the finance industry can best support sustainable growth. 

As the global finance industry's largest trade body, the IIF’s represents more than 400 member institutions from over 60 countries. Santander Group Executive Chair, Ana Botín, has been Chair of the IIF since the begging of this year and is the first woman to lead the industry group in its 40-year history. 

The three-day meeting, titled ‘Building resilience amid turbulence and transformation’, featured speakers including Governor Bank of Spain, Pablo Hernández de Cos; Bank of England Governor, Andrew Bailey; European Commission financial services commissioner, Mairead McGuinness; or European Central Bank policymaker, Francois Villeroy de Galhau. 

The event opened with a panel conversation between Ana Botín and Tim Adams, IIF’s President and Chief Executive Office. During their talk, Santander’s Group Executive Chair, reflected on how stimulating growth is critical in addressing the key challenges society faces today, saying, “Our society is facing several significant challenges: from climate change to the aging demographic and rising public sector indebtedness. The one thing they have in common is the need for economic growth, as without it, we cannot afford to address the challenges sustainably. This requires a collective mobilization across governments, regulators and the private sector to stimulate sustainable growth. And the financial services industry has a critical role to play in supporting the necessary investment.”

The IIF recently published a report on the role the financial system can play enabling role in the green transition titled ‘The Role of The Financial Sector in the Net Zero Transition: Assessing Implications for Policy, Supervision and Market Frameworks’. Its recommendations include the need for pro-growth policy frameworks at both national and global level to support a net-zero economy and enable a whole-economy transition. 

Commenting on the green transition, Ana Botín said, “We need to help companies who are brown to transition to green. A one size fits all approach risks undermining growth, and with it the transition to a greener economic model. Of course, there is a lot of need for green investments, but the bigger need is to support the transition from brown to green”.

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