The Capital Markets Authority (CMA) and the Kenya Bankers Association (KBA) have Wednesday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that sets the stage for closer collaboration between the two organizations in the areas of research, data sharing, analysis, and stakeholder engagement.

In the MOU that was signed during KBA’s 7th Annual Banking Research Conference, CMA and KBA seek to reinforce the ability of the financial sector to be a key driver of economic development and transformation through research and innovation. The two organizations also committed to champion industry development through advocacy and promoting investor education and awareness.

The low uptake of capital markets products and services will also be addressed through synergies designed to explore how the banking industry, being a major participant in the capital markets, can address both issuer and product dynamics, as well as, identify financing solutions for alternative infrastructure.

The CMA Chief Executive, Mr. Paul Muthaura observed: “The signing of the MOU with KBA is aligned to the CMA Strategic Plan, 2018-2023, under its objective on Enhancing Strategic Influence. This encapsulates several key initiatives, including the need to engage with stakeholders to ensure deepening of the market and to build strategic alliances with domestic and international partners. The Strategic Plan seeks to position the Authority to facilitate the delivery of the Big Four Agenda with a focus on identifying capital markets solutions to Food Security, Affordable Housing, Accessible Healthcare, and Manufacturing.”

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Mr. Muthaura added: “KBA has been a consistent and committed partner in the development of the capital markets through its initiation of the Kenya Green Bond Program and active participation in the Bond Market Steering Committee, Capital Markets Master Plan (CMMP) Steering Committee, and CMMP Industry Working Groups.  KBA also contributes to the Capital Markets Quarterly Soundness Reports and Budget Policy Proposal stakeholder engagements. This MOU is a natural progression to further support closer coordination and cooperation with the Association as a key strategic partner,’’ he said.

The KBA Chief Executive, Dr. Habil Olaka, said that in keeping with the MOU, the banking industry and CMA will embrace a collaborative approach on research and policy outputs in a bid to ensure stakeholder involvement prior to development of policy and regulation frameworks.

“We are very pleased to be partnering with the Capital Markets Authority which leads in Africa in terms of capital market development and innovation,” said Dr. Olaka. “For years KBA has been the preeminent source of banking industry research and the Association has led discourse on policy matters, through this partnership we will be able to leverage our expertise and resources to contribute to broader financial sector growth, anchored on the development of our capital markets.”

Dr. Olaka added: “This collaboration will explore opportunities for stimulating activity in the banking industry and capital markets through Fintech innovation as we seek to deepen financial inclusion and ultimately further sustainable economic development,” he said.

The organizations will also strive to steer ahead initiatives within the bond market including strengthening netting and collateralized transaction frameworks, green financing and operationalizing bond market infrastructure and products.