UNCDF Webinar Series: Better Remittances Data for Better Decisions – 7, 8 and 9 June 2022

To understand remittance markets better, United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) has consulted with more than fifty central banks and ten technology providers to improve the collection and measurement of cross-border remittances for informing policymaking, product development, and investment. One way to strengthen the policies and processes that facilitate the collection of frequent, accurate remittance data and understanding of remittance markets is to leverage technology to build systems that help collect, monitor, and analyze granular remittance data and drive efficiency and sustainability, reducing costs and improving overall efficiency.


The three webinars on 7, 8 and 9 June covered the following topics:

  • 7 June session: Lessons learned on building an international transaction reporting system to collect remittance data: experiences across central bank
  • 8 June session: Why do central banks, authorities, and the industry need high-quality granular remittances data? (The case for the collection and analysis of transaction-level, supply-side data on remittances)
  • 9 June session: Leverage technology to capture the full potential of remittance system-generated data

Recordings and presentations

Agenda

During the webinar, central banks will share their experiences in the development of tools and systems to improve the collection of remittance flow data and assist central banks in the least developed countries (LDCs).

Agenda 

  • Opening remarks and introduction to UNCDF
  • Presentation of UNCDF’s paper on lessons learned from the Central Banks on building an International Transaction Reporting System (ITRS) to collect remittance data
  • Sources of the Remittances data and Balance of Payments Statistics: Experiences of Central Banks of Colombia and the Philippines
  • Data automation processes for the collection of remittances payments: SWIFT
  • Q&A
  • Closing remarks
  1.  

UNCDF technical paper 

Lessons-learned-on-building-an-itrs-to-collect-remittance-data 

The case for the collection and analysis of transaction-level, supply-side data on remittances.

Agenda

  • Opening remarks and introduction to UNCDF
  • Presentation of UNCDF’s paper on the case for the collection and analysis of transaction-level, supply-side data on remittances
  • Examples of central banks in countries collecting data with a policy use case:
    • Remittances recipient country: the case of Banco de Mexico
    • Remittances sender country: the case of South African Reserve Bank
    • Central Bank of Spain’s experience in compiling cross-border remittances data
  • Experiences from a Remittances Service Provider: Terrapay
  • Q&A
  • Closing remarks

UNCDF technical paper 

The-case-for-the-collection-and-analysis-of-transaction-level-supply-side-data-on-remittances 

During the webinar, central banks and technology providers will share their experiences in the use of technology in the development of tools and systems to improve the collection of remittance flow data and assist central banks in the least developed countries (LDCs). 

Agenda

  • Opening remarks and introduction to UNCDF
  • Presentation of UNCDF’s paper on a model for central banks’ systematic capture, management, and analysis of remittance data.”
  • Examples of central banks and technology companies using technology in the development of tools and systems to improve the collection of remittance flow data.
    • National Bank of Rwanda
    • Business Reporting – Advisory Group
    • Global Voice Group
  • Q&A
  • Closing remarks

 

UNCDF technical paper 

A-model-for-the-systematic-capture-management-and-analysis-of-remittance-data-by-central-banks 

Speakers

Moderators

Paloma Monroy
Technical Specialist
Migration and Remittances
UNCDF


Paloma Monroy is a Migration and Remittances Specialist and leads the work on international transaction reporting and analysis systems for the UNCDF migration and remittances portfolio. In particular, for improving the quality of disaggregated remittances data to support evidence-based policymaking and for systematic reviews of policies, laws and regulations that limit remittances ecosystems and women’s and males’ economic activity. Her work experience fostering transparency, safety, reliability, and efficiency spans more than 20 international payments and remittances markets.

 

Ibish Kastrati
Balance of Payments Specialist
Migration and Remittances
UNCDF 

Ibish Kastrati has extensive experience with the Central Bank of the Republic of Kosovo (CBK) in establishing the foundations of the External Statistics Department. He has a decade of active involvement in the process of collection, compilation, and dissemination of data in the field of External Sector Statistics (ESS). More specifically, his work involved drafting the legal basis for Kosovo External Statistics; designing new reporting forms (International Transactions Reporting System, Enterprise Surveys, Trade in Goods from Customs, and Administrative Sources); compiling data according to international standards; developing metadata; and preparing tables for publications.

 

Panelists

Ma. Angelica B. Villena
Deputy Director
Department of Economic Statistics
Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) 

Ma. Angelica B. Villena is the Deputy Director of the External Sector Statistics Group (ESSG) of the Department of Economic Statistics (DES) of the BSP. She leads the group responsible for the overall compilation and analysis of external sector statistics, including the country’s balance of payments (BOP) and international investment position (IIP), among others. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration with Accountancy from the University of the Philippines (UP) and Master of Business Administration from the De La Salle University.

 

Ma.  Mercedes Collazos Gaitan
Leader Economist
External Sector area
Banco de la República 

            

María Mercedes Collazos Gaitan is the Leader Economist at the Banco de la República (Central Bank of Colombia). She has been with the bank for about 30 years, currently working as a coordinator of the external sector area, which is responsible for the compilation and dissemination of the Colombian external sector statistics. She has a wide experience in cross-border payments mechanisms and their statistical measurement, and is a co-author of studies on subjects related to the external sector and economic determinants of workers’ remittances, best practices in statistical measurement, and the cost of remittances transactions. An external economist of the sector, she has worked as a short-term expert for the World Bank, CEMLA, and the IMF, in Latin America and Africa.

 

Michimaru Onizuka
Senior Business Manager
Compliance and Data Expert Team
SWIFT Belgium 

Michimaru (Mitch) Onizuka has been working at SWIFT for 28 years. He is currently a senior business manager for SWIFT Data products, focusing on business development of SWIFT Scope solution globally. Prior to this role, Mitch was responsible for the business development of Payments Market Infrastructures in EMEA where he engaged with different central banks, Financial Market Infrastructures and payment service providers. Prior to joining SWIFT, Mitch worked at Citibank and Security Pacific National Bank in Tokyo.

Moderators

Paloma Monroy
Technical Specialist
Migration and Remittances
UNCDF

Paloma Monroy is a Migration and Remittances Specialist and leads the work on international transaction reporting and analysis systems for the UNCDF migration and remittances portfolio. In particular, for improving the quality of disaggregated remittances data to support evidence-based policymaking and for systematic reviews of policies, laws and regulations that limit remittances ecosystems and women’s and males’ economic activity. Her work experience fostering transparency, safety, reliability, and efficiency spans more than 20 international payments and remittances markets.

Dr. Robin Gravesteijn
Lead Systems and Research
Migration and Remittances

UNCDF

Robin Gravesteijn leads the data analytics and research work on digital finance and inclusive economies at UNCDF, with a focus on Asia and the global effort around migration and remittances. His other areas of work include decent work and entrepreneurship, digital finance for clean energy, and women and youth empowerment. The facility in Asia offers (big) data analytics technical support for financial and remittance service providers as well as central banks. With more than 16 years of working experience in development finance, Dr. Gravesteijn has managed social performance assessment and monitoring systems for the impact investment fund Oikocredit, and has worked for the International Labour Office conducting impact evaluations, offering technical support for financial service providers in Central Asia launching loan programs for women-owned businesses and small and medium enterprises. Prior to that, Dr. Gravesteijn worked in the commercial banking sector and at the Rabobank Foundation. He received his doctorate in social and policy sciences from the University of Bath (UK), and has a master’s degree in development studies (cum laude) and economics from Utrecht University (the Netherlands).

 

Panelists

Constance Libusha
Senior Business System Analyst
Financial Surveillance Department
South African Reserve Bank 

Constance Libusha is a Senior Business Systems Analyst in the Financial Surveillance of the South African Reserve Bank.
She has more than 18 years of experience in the financial services industry, with the last three years spent in central banking. Her main focus is in leading the maintenance of the cross-border transactions reporting system used in the Financial Surveillance Department of the SARB. She is also the project lead of the project team responsible for implementation of the core reporting system in SADC member states, and is currently leading a team working with the SADC member states in the implementation of the SADC harmonization of Exchange Control Balance of Payment (BOP) codes.

Constance is currently an MBA candidate at Wits Business School, and holds an MDP from GIBS, a B. Com honours degree in Economics from UNISA, National Diploma in Information Technology, and various post-graduate qualifications in business analysis.

She loves to travel with her husband and her two children, and has a personal goal to travel each year to a place she has not yet been.

 

Lizbeth Leyva
Manager
Sector Analysis and Measurement Division, 
Banco de Mexico

 

Teresa Garcia Cid
Manager
External Current and Capital Account Unit
Banco de España

Teresa Garcia Cid has a degree in economic and business sciences from Universidad Complutense de Madrid, specializing in Monetary Policy and Public Sector. Working at Banco de España since 1995, she is currently the Manager for the External Current and Capital Account Unit of the Balance of Payments and Financial Accounts Division in the Statistics Department of the Banco de España.

The Unit is responsible for:
• The compilation of the Current and capital account of the Balance of Payments and of the International Trade in Services Statistics
• The data quality management and dissemination of International Investment Position and Balance of Payments products (data sending to international organizations and national publications, web, press releases, etc.)
• The production and dissemination of competitiveness indexes and the dissemination of rates of exchange

This responsibility entails close collaboration with several national and international agencies and organizations. At the national level, the cooperation is especially important with the National Statistics Office, in particular with the National Accounts Department (in order to guarantee full NA and BOP coherence). At the international level, they have an active participation in several working groups (Balance of Payments Working Group and Travel Workshop in the scope of EUROSTAT, Exchange of Confidential Information under the umbrella of the CMFB or the Working Party on Trade in Goods and Services of the OECD, for instance). In the area of remittances, in particular, they closely cooperate with CEMLA (Latin America and Caribe Central Banks Association) in annual meetings, and continue to work with main counterpart countries.

 

Saransh Verma,
Director–Analytics,
TerraPay

Saransh serves as the Director of Analytics at TerraPay. In this role, he is engaged in building TerraPay’s analytics capabilities that enable smarter data-driven decision-making, improved across-the-board collaborations and the organisation’s growth.

Saransh has been part of TerraPay since its inception and has worked in various roles and functions such as ideation, market research, acquisition, and compliance aspects while building the foundation for TerraPay’s launch.

From 2016–2021, Saransh established and led the Business Operations functions at TerraPay. He also serves as a Director on the Board of TerraPay Solutions India Private Limited.

Moderators

Paloma Monroy
Technical Specialist
Migration and Remittances
UNCDF

Paloma Monroy is a Migration and Remittances Specialist and leads the work on international transaction reporting and analysis systems for the UNCDF migration and remittances portfolio. In particular, for improving the quality of disaggregated remittances data to support evidence-based policymaking and for systematic reviews of policies, laws and regulations that limit remittances ecosystems and women’s and males’ economic activity. Her work experience fostering transparency, safety, reliability, and efficiency spans more than 20 international payments and remittances markets.

 

David Taylor
Data Systems Specialist
Migration and Remittances
UNCDF

David Taylor has more than 10 years of experience in working with government bodies and more than 7 years of experience in working with financial regulators to facilitate the use of data for policymaking and product design, facilitating regulators to design data-driven decision support systems.

 

Panelists

Wilson Kamali
Director of Statistics
National Bank of Rwanda

Wilson Kamali has wide-ranging expertise in the areas of Statistics, Economics and the Financial sector. He gained his expertise in the last 9 years while working for the National Bank of Rwanda (NBR). Currently, he holds the portfolio of the Director of Statistics at NBR. Previously, he was the financial sector analyst in the same institution. In the Statistics docket, he oversees production and analysis of external statistics (mainly balance of payment), monetary and financial statistics and economic statistics. Additionally, he oversees bank-wide data management, including financial inclusion and consumer protection related data. Wilson is the project lead on the development of the electronic data warehouse at the National Bank of Rwanda, which is a new revolution on electronic data reporting and management.

Wilson holds a master’s degree in policy economics (Williams College, USA), a bachelor’s degree in mathematics, and is an associate professional chartered accountant (ACCA-UK).

 

Marta Kuczyńska
Head of Business Development
Business Reporting – Advisory Group

Marta leads the Business Development department at Business Reporting – Advisory Group (BR-AG), developing new projects for regulators, central banks and the financial industry on a path to digital transformation and alignment with international standards in financial and non-financial data flows. She focuses on the interplay of policies and regulatory frameworks, data standards and technologies to maximise interoperability and data-driven decision-making. Together with BR-AG teams, Marta engages in the assessment of strategies, and the requirements and needs of authorities in developed and developing economies to find the best fit for purpose technology solutions, facilitate cross-border collaboration, e.g., in initiatives such as the Global Financial Innovation Network. Marta pursues her professional interests in innovation management for sustainable development, financial inclusion and transparency of financial data ecosystems.

 

James Gabriel Claude
CEO
Global Voice Group

James Claude is the CEO of Global Voice Group, a global provider of ICT and RegTech solutions for governments and regulatory agencies. Before he was nominated to this post in October 2018, he had worked for the company for 13 years, actively contributing to its international expansion and diversification strategy. He has been one of the key members of GVG’s management team since 2009.

After starting his career as manager of GVG’s Network Operations Center in 2005, James
Claude quickly took charge of the technical management of many projects implemented by the company for telecommunications regulatory authorities, until his nomination as Chief Technology Officer in 2012. His leadership qualities are rooted in his previous experience as Vice President of Technology, as well as in his extensive technological know-how and his thorough knowledge of the digital transformation ecosystem.

Fluent in English, Spanish, and French, Mr. Claude holds a Master’s Degree in Management from Boston University and a First Degree in Telematics Engineering from the Pontificia Universidad Católica Madre y Maestra. He has also completed numerous training courses in advanced technologies and business administration, such as “Transforming your Leadership Strategy” and “Negotiation for Executives” courses offered by the MIT Sloan School of Management.

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