The World Alliance of International Financial Centers (WAIFC) meets in Dubai for its Annual General Meeting 2021 and welcomes the Italian Banking, Insurance, and Finance Federation (FeBAF) as its 21st member

Dubai, 26.10.2021 – Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) hosted WAIFC's Annual General Meeting 2021 in Dubai today. More than 30 member representatives took part in the meeting.

The WAIFC General Meeting unanimously approved the membership of the Italian Banking, Insurance, and Finance Federation (FeBAF). FeBAF was an observer before, and all WAIFC members are very much looking forward to continuing working closely together with FeBAF and exchanging best practices.

Furthermore, the General Meeting elected Manal Bernoussi from the Casablanca Finance City Authority to the board of directors. Additionally, ten members of the board of directors, the managing director, and the treasurer were re-elected for a second term. Furthermore, the City of Boston and Jersey Finance have joined WAIFC as observers.

The delegates also discussed current issues, e.g., the joint activities in supporting the economic recovery from the current pandemic, the transition towards a sustainable financial industry, innovative trends in finance like artificial intelligence, financing of SMEs, and inclusive finance.

Other events will take place during the next two days, including a roundtable for discussing the future of financial centers, a visit to DIFC's Innovation Hub and FinTech Hive, as well as a gathering at the Dubai Expo.

Commenting on the results of the Annual General Meeting, Jennifer Reynolds, Chairwoman of the WAIFC, stated: "Today's Annual General Meeting of WAIFC was an opportunity to reflect on the important role financial centers play in supporting the recovery from the pandemic and the growth in the real economy. Our members all agree on the importance of collaborating on how best to accelerate sustainable economic growth and innovation in the delivery of global financial services. We were also delighted to welcome our newest member, the Italian Banking, Insurance, and Finance Federation (FeBAF)."

Arif Amiri, CEO of DIFC Authority, commented: "DIFC is delighted to be hosting the World Alliance of International Financial Centers Annual General Meeting. It is the first time leaders from financial centers across the globe have chosen to convene in Dubai. We are looking forward to leading important discussions with our fellow members, especially in the areas of the future of finance and innovation where we have made substantial progress, as well as highlighting the achievements DIFC has made, which contribute to our reputation as the region's leading financial center."

Dr. Jochen Biedermann, Managing Director of the WAIFC, added: "After a long pandemic-related break, our members met in Dubai today for our Annual General Meeting and had a very intensive exchange on current topics. The focus was on sustainable finance and the economic recovery from the pandemic. We want to thank DIFC very much for the kind invitation to Dubai, the warm hospitality, and the perfect organization of our Annual General Meeting."

Appointed to the WAIFC Board on 3 June 2021, DIFC, through its recent achievements, is working with WAIFC to address key issues surrounding resilience and recovery from the pandemic and planning for long-term success. Being a member of WAIFC reflects DIFC's commitment to share industry knowledge with other financial centers around the world. DIFC focuses on driving the future of finance with WAIFC members in areas such as FinTech, Innovation, Sustainable Finance, and developing Digital Economies.

The World Alliance of International Financial Centers (WAIFC) is a non-profit association registered in Belgium, representing 21 leading international financial centers of four continents. WAIFC members are governments agencies, associations, and similar institutions developing and promoting their financial centers. WAIFC facilitates cooperation between its members, the exchange of best practices, and communication with the general public.

Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) is one of the world's most advanced financial centers and the leading financial hub for the Middle East, Africa, and South Asia (MEASA), which comprises 72 countries with an approximate population of 3 billion and a nominal GDP of USD 7.7 trillion. With a 17-year track record of facilitating trade and investment flows across the MEASA region, the Centre connects these fast-growing markets with the economies of Asia, Europe, and the Americas through Dubai.

DIFC is home to an internationally recognized, independent regulator and a proven judicial system with an English common law framework, as well as the region's largest financial ecosystem of almost 28,000 professionals working across over 3,200 active registered companies – making up the largest and most diverse pool of industry talent in the region. The center's vision is to drive the future of finance. Today, it offers one of the region's most comprehensive FinTech and venture capital environments, including cost-effective licensing solutions, fit-for-purpose regulation, innovative accelerator programs, and funding for growth-stage start-ups. Comprising a variety of world-renowned retail and dining venues, dynamic art and culture scene, residential apartments, hotels, and public spaces, DIFC continues to be one of Dubai's most sought-after business and lifestyle destinations.