On 21 October 2023, Erbil played host to the "Iraqi Banking Conference in the Kurdistan Region," organised by the Iraqi Private Banks League. The event was graced by the presence of Prime Minister of Kurdistan Region Masrour Barzani, Chairman of Al Handal International Group and President of the Iraqi Private Banks League Wadee Al Handal, Governor of the Central Bank of Iraq Ali Mohsen Al-Alaq, and various government officials and parliament members.
During the conference, Wadee Al Handal emphasised the importance of discussing various topics, including the banking sector's role in supporting growth, creating an attractive environment for investments, identifying opportunities, and addressing obstacles, particularly financing challenges. He stressed the need for investment projects to relieve pressure on government expenses, promote private sector growth, and generate job opportunities. Additionally, he discussed the development of the banking sector's international relations, the role of the Central Bank, and plans for reforming and enhancing the sector. These reforms aim to make the banking sector more organised, flexible, and globally compliant, serving as a viable alternative to the government banking sector. These improvements encompass areas such as anti-money laundering, technology adoption, and human capacity development.
Furthermore, Mr. Al Handal highlighted recent significant developments in the banking sector's structure, driven by the Central Bank of Iraq and government programs focused on digital transformation in transactions and payments. These initiatives, progressing rapidly, are expected to yield positive outcomes with a substantial impact on the country's economy. The Central Bank of Iraq and government initiatives for digital payments are reshaping the banking sector, promising a significant impact on the country's economy in a dynamic world.