Seoul, 25 May 2023 – The European Association of Co-operative Banks (EACB) in the person of Nina Schindler, Chief Executive Officer, was honored to take part in the 60th anniversary celebrations of “Saemaul Geumgo”, a member of the Korean Federation of Community Credit Cooperatives (KFCC). On this occasion, the international conference convened leading public authorities, cooperative banking representatives and academics from around the world in Seoul.
Under the motto “60 years of partnership, 100 years for bright future”, the Anniversary’s celebrative event, hosting 550 guests, served as platform to commemorate the economic and social impact of cooperative banking exemplified by Saemaul Geumgo, Korea’s leading financial cooperative. The organisation’ success story showcases how cooperative banks support economic development in rural communities, sustainable transformation and social inclusion.
Invited to deliver a Keynote speech, Nina Schindler, underlined the benefits of cooperative banking and shed light on the current challenges that stand to influence cooperative banking, particularly in relation to a tightening of regulatory policies, digitalisation, and increased competition in the financial sector.
In this context, she emphasised that “Credit cooperatives and cooperative banks should aim to become “retail banking champions” in their markets, providing a full range of high-quality financial services to meet the needs of households and small and medium-sized enterprises.” She then added “This may require a network structure with a division of tasks, comprising local banks, specialised entities and especially a strong fully-licensed cooperative central bank with important key functions.”
In her concluding remarks, Ms. Schindler dedicated a congratulatory message praising the achievements of Saemaul Geumgo and KFCC in their cooperative banking journey. “Saemaul Geumgo and KFCC are shining examples of the major role that cooperative banks can play in the financial and economic system, and the benefits they provide for communities and for their country. We are more than proud to have Saemaul Geumgo and KFCC as members and partners in our mission as the European Association of Co-operative Banks.”