The host of Global Ethical Finance Forum, Scotland, reaffirmed its position as an ethical finance hubResponsible finance leaders from both the emerging and developed world declared the ground-breaking nature of the Global Ethical Finance Forum (GEFF), widely considered the first meaningful global discussion on opportunities for convergence and collaboration across the disconnected segments of ethical finance. Responsible finance has been largely driven by institutional investors, even though the public is gaining an appreciation of its importance following the 2008-09 financial crisis.
GEFF provided a unique opportunity for better engagement with regulators and standard setting organizations concerned about investor education and helping to bridge the gap by inspiring greater engagement by the institutional investors they engage with.
Speaking to a packed audience, His Royal Highness Mohammad Sanusi II – the Emir of Kano - said that “ethical finance is a small element of a world view that challenges the current dominant world view.” He made a compelling case for the need for responsible leadership, drawing from his experience as the Governor of Nigeria’s Central Bank, a position from which he was ousted following his efforts to save the Nigerian banking system from collapse.
The forum ended with an exclusive reception hosted by the Scottish Government at the Edinburgh Castle, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The host of the evening, Humza Yousaf MSP, Scotland’s Minister for Europe and International Development, shared with guests the history of the Great Hall where the reception took place, and congratulated the organizers for gathering great minds in Edinburgh. The backdrop of the Castle and host by the Scottish Government was perfectly apt given Scotland’s undisputed ethical finance heritage and Edinburgh’s role as a historic and cultural magnet in Europe.
The conveners of GEFF, Middle East Global Advisors - an intelligence platform serving the Middle East North Africa Southeast Asia (MENASEA) region for the last 22 years – partnered with premier organisations to deliver a truly successful event. They include Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank, Alliance Trust Investments, DDCAP, Global Alliance for Banking on Values, The Association of the Luxembourg Fund Industry (ALFI), Islamic Finance Council UK, Inclusive Finance Network Luxembourg, Thomson Reuters, Luxembourg for Finance, SEDCO Capital and the UK Sustainable Investment & Finance Association. Dr. Sayd Farook, Vice Chairman of Middle East Global Advisors, reaffirmed the historic nature of GEFF: “The forum is only the beginning of a critical conversation to take responsible finance into the mainstream, and trigger a paradigm shift within the finance industry. I look forward to seeing this annual platform inspire a generation of leaders taking finance into their own hands.”
The 2ndannual Global Ethical Finance Forum will take place in September 2016.