The financial services regulators launched the Intergovernmental Fintech Working Group (IFWG) Innovation Hub on 7 April 2020 to respond to changes in the financial sector driven by fintech. The IFWG seeks to promote responsible innovation in the sector.
The Innovation Hub is intended to support the sector in introducing innovations that complement the core mandates of regulators, including financial stability and soundness, consumer protection, financial inclusion, and fair lending practices. The Innovation Hub offers clarification on the regulatory landscape, access to a space for testing the regulatory fit of innovative solutions and participation in initiatives and forums helping to shape the future of financial sector regulation on emerging fintech topics.
Fintech innovation leverages technology to address inefficiencies and other challenges in the financial sector. It embraces agility, adaptability and responsiveness, traits that are essential as local and global economies navigate this period of uncertainty. To help address the expected economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the IFWG believes innovation among fintech firms and other financial sector innovators is required now more than ever and must be supported.
The Innovation Hub provides assistance to innovators in the financial technology space. Support for these innovators comes from the IFWG members, including the Financial Intelligence Centre, Financial Sector Conduct Authority, National Credit Regulator, National Treasury, South African Revenue Service and South African Reserve Bank. The Innovation Hub is open to all financial sector innovators, whether from a start-up, an established fintech firm, an incumbent financial service provider or an adjacent industry entering the financial services market (such as retail or telecommunications).