Afghanistan Banks Association

د افغانستان د بانکونو ټولنه
Afghanistan Banks Association
Voice of The Banks

Afghanistan Banks Association

ABA‘s Member Banks Participation in SWIFT Event, India

date: April 03-04, 2018

In order to comply with SWIFT global practices, have update on SWIFT recent services, exchange ideas and experiences, as result of ABA-NUG Chairperson generous collaboration with SWIFT officials, 2 days’ meeting was conducted in Delhi, India during April 03-04, 2018. The Event was attended by SWIFT high officials, delegation of ABA’s member banks and Afghanistan Central Bank(DAB). ABA with cooperation of NUGC, persistently works to strengthen SWIFT operation in the country. The SWIFT National User Group Committee (NUGC) was established by ABA to address SWIFT issues, comply with its rules, regulations, and adopt cost beneficial new technologies.

To have massive participation of the banks, ABA closely coordinated with its member banks and insisted them to take part in SWIFT Delhi event.

Participant Banks
1. Da Afghanistan Bank
2. Afghanistan International Bank
3. Ghazanfar Bank
4. New Kabul Bank
5. Bank -e-Millie Afghan
6. Bakhtar Bank
7. Pashtany Bank
8. Afghan United Bank
9. Azizi bank

Discussion and Conclusion:

Alaa AlRousan SWIFT Account Director
1- Customer Security Programme: In 2017, around 95% of the banks in Afghanistan managed to do the self-attestation requested by SWIFT. This result is over than the global average of 89% which is considered an excellent achievement to the banks in Afghanistan and to the country reputation and image globally. In 2018, we have to continue with the same momentum with an extra step which is implementing the 16 mandatory controls mentioned and do the self-attestation before the end of 31st of December 2018. I have attached links to all needed documentation related to the CSP. All what is needed now is your efforts to implement them before the end of this year. And of course, if you need help, feel free to contact us anytime”.

2- SWIFT upgrade to version 7.2 : by November 2018 all banks globally have to do the SWIFT upgrade to version 7.2, this requirements a complete migration of the infrastructure, new Hardware to be procured and finally new features to be implemented to be compliant with SWIFT CSP.

3- SWIFT Cloud offerings: due to the CSP compliance commitment and also the mandatory upgrade this year, we have discussion the nomination of potential migration of banks in Afghanistan to the cloud based solution "Alliance Lite2". It will be easier for banks to manage the light infrastructure there, being more secured and compliant with CSP framework.

4- Of course, with the power of community, I can justify getting back to SWIFT Board to ask for discounted price of the migration services cost to Alliance Lite2. We have nominated 9 banks who can migrate to the service.
5- Middle East Regional Conference 2018: SWIFT is organizing a special event for Customers in the Middle East and Central Asia. An interesting agenda that covers the main pain issues from this region with deep focus on the Cyber Security, Compliance and also payments industry. The event will take place in Dubai on the 24th and 25th of September 2018.

Mr. Asadullah ABA NUGC Chairperson has mentioned that there will be arrangement to invite all banks in Afghanistan for a meeting to discuss the potential migration to SWIFT Alliance Lite2 and also the possible subscription to the compliance solutions during the next two weeks and then notify SWIFT about the outcome of this meeting.

Besides, during the Dehli meeting, compliance issues like KYC, Registry, Sanctions Screening, and Name Screening and other more some subject matters were discussed and action plan was proposed. At the end, ABA-Chairperson of the NUGC efforts was appreciated by SWIFT officials.