|Professionalism as the Core
K B SENARATH BANDARA
The Association of Professional Bankers - Sri Lanka (APB) is the prime body of professional bankers in Sri Lanka and has been in existence since 1988 providing updated knowledge and networking opportunities to the banking community. APB also does a lot to develop young bankers to have aspiring careers. In the process, APB maintains high standard of professionalism, ethics and governance with integrity as declared in its mission statement. The Association continues to evolve year after year understanding contemporary trends while upholding its deep rooted principles and values.
As the newly elected President I pay my gratitude to founding members, all the Past Presidents and their Councils and the membership in general, for the part played in upbringing the Association to what it is today.
I consider it a privilege and honour to be elected as the President of the Association of Professional Bankers - Sri Lanka. I thank the membership for placing their trust on me, and believing in me and my abilities to give leadership to this 28 years old well groomed and respected professional body of bankers for a period of one year. As the President, I assure you, that I will uphold the constitution and responsibilities thrust upon me and discharge them with respect, and to the best of my ability.
When we look at the banking industry, the biggest challenge the banks are facing today is the constantly changing geopolitical and economic environment, both locally and internationally. Uncertainty is the biggest enemy. As a country, having economic and political ties with major economies, we cannot discount them lightly and the country has to be ready to manage the consequences.
Addressing the fundamentals of an economy might be the right approach in this uncertain environment. In the domestic front the government is focusing more on rural economy and the SME sector which is evident from its recent policy decisions.
Having strong SME sector is a healthy sign for an economy in the long run. In this exercise, banks have a vital role to play as the institutions channeling vital resources i.e. funds to various sectors in an economy. I believe that we bankers as citizens of this country have a responsibility and a moral obligation to play an active role in this effort supporting start up business and grooming them to have a sustainable economy for the country that can absorb the shocks coming from external sources.
Challenges never end for banks. Banks are now faced with increased capital requirements to comply with BASEL III which comes into effect from July 2017 increasing the liquidity coverage ratios, requirements of complying with leverage ratios etc. APB as the professional body of bankers, we have a responsibility in providing an understanding about these technical aspects of banking to our juniors and the implications of these regulatory requirements and how they should measure them in their business decisions on a day to day basis.
During the coming year, we will do our best to take APB activities to a higher level in achieving our objectives while upholding the principles of the APB. Annually, we have doing many activities, for the benefit of our membership. The pinnacle of them is staging the Annual Convention. This year, we will focus on a theme that is more fundamental to banking and relevant in today's context.
Finally, I like to assure you that my Council and I will work towards achieving objectives of APB by providing you with activities, programmes, publications and events aimed at enhancing awareness and knowledge on topical subjects and networking opportunities thereby enhancing and growing APB to the next level and we sincerely look forward to your active participation, encouragement and support in this journey.
Senarath Bandara -
Association of Professional Bankers - Sri Lanka