The closing ceremony of the Pan African Central Bank Conference on Risk and Reserve Management, hosted by the Bank of Mauritius (BoM) from the 20-22 June 2023, organised in collaboration with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and Allianz Global Investors, was held yesterday morning in Port-Louis.
The two-day Conference was attended by central bankers from a wide range of African countries, delegations from training programmes, international experts and speakers who shared their experiences and discussed today’s challenges and future opportunities in Central Bank Reserve Management from an African perspective.
In his address on the occasion, the Governor of the Bank of Mauritius, Mr Harvesh Kumar Seegolam, lauded the initiative of the GIZ and Allianz Global Investors in bringing together the Southern African Development Community region to discuss a subject matter, which he emphasised has become high on the agenda of all central banks in particular after the COVID-19 pandemic.
Pertaining to the topic of sustainable central banking, Mr Seegolam underlined that according to the World Economic Forum, around 50% of the global GDP is moderately or highly dependent on nature. He observed that climate change- related disasters and unpredictable patterns have been detrimental to many economies, and affirmed that sustainability agenda should be at the forefront for all of us.
Global coordinated efforts should be spearheaded to mitigate the problem and to be able to adapt to it, so that we may protect the planet and preserve intergenerational legacy, he stated.
The Governor further spoke of the role played by Central Banks in the journey of their respective countries towards greener and more sustainable global economy. Central Banks, he added, can support the greening of the financial system in various ways, such as through the integration of climate-related risks data into financial stability assessments; usage of adequate taxonomy; proper disclosure requirements; and most importantly, the management of foreign exchange reserves in a more sustainable way.
He pointed out that there is a growing number of Central Banks becoming more climate change-conscious, while informing that the Bank of Mauritius in June 2021 came up with a guide for the issue of sustainable bonds to ensure integrity of the sustainable financing ecosystem in the country and to prevent any kind of greenwashing from happening.
Moreover, as regards the setting up of the Mauritius Investment Corporation Ltd at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Governor of BoM stated that it has helped preserved banking resiliency and financial stability, improved the profitability of the bank and is working towards building more value and wealth for the future generation.
Mr Harvesh Kumar Seegolam also reassured that the Gross Official International Reserves of Mauritius remain at comfortable levels and provide adequate buffer against potential adverse external shocks. As our economy continue to recover, the BoM has set the clear objective to further consolidate its reserves, he underscored.
The closing ceremony also culminated in a graduation ceremony, during which some fifty participants who followed an online training course on ‘Central Bank Risk and Reserve Management’ that was held virtually last year, were remitted certificates.