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Rietumu Bank: Geneva Grain Forum Showed the Importance of Playing According to New Rules

05-Dec-2017, 11:26 / Products & Services Tightening of the legislative requirements and the required conformity to the compliance procedures will exert a serious influence on the international trade of agricultural products, including grain crops, says Natalja Perhova, Member of the Board of Rietumu Bank.

These issues, alongside other topical trends of the industry, were recently discussed at one of the most influential professional world forums - Global Grain in Geneva.

Natalja Perhova, Member of the Board of Rietumu Bank

Financing of international trade, including transactions with agricultural products, is among the priority trends in the services of Rietumu Bank, which is a regular participant and partner of the Geneva forum.

Following the results of the conference, Natalja Perhova said that topical issues of the industry were discussed at Global Grain, such as yield of grain crops, which has remained at a high level in recent years and, in Russia, reached another record this year, the resulting changes of international logistics, adaptations of the infrastructure, as well as hedging of risks, influence of geopolitical factors on world trade and other issues of concern for the market participants.

It was noted that the growing volumes of grain transportation require additional development of the infrastructure, as well as increase the capacities and purchase of new vehicles for freight transportation – now farmers in Russia and Ukraine experience problems such as, for example, a shortage of rolling stock. Hereto, Latvian ports continue playing an important role in the transshipment of grain – considerable volumes of products from Russia, which is one of the leading participants of the industry, are exported through them.

However, most discussions on the sidelines of the forum were caused by the “new rules of the game” on the market, which continued changing under the influence of the legislative changes with regards to the increase of transparency of cash flows and transactions, supervision on the part of state structures and conformity to the new procedures of financial institutions.

“Transparency, control over transactions or, as banks call it, compliance, are pressing issues today all over the world. They directly influence the structure of business, banking operations, provision of financing for international trade transactions both on the part of banks and alternative funds, which eventually operate through banks as well and must also take into account all latest legislative requirements,” said Natalja Perhova.

According to her forecasts, further on, it will lead to the enlargement and concentration of businesses, as conformity to the compliance standards will inevitably require considerable expenses from entrepreneurs. “This is the reality one has to take into consideration. At present, there is no bank or fund anywhere that would ignore this aspect of the operation of trade companies and their cooperation with the banking system.”

However, according to Natalja Perhova, business is already adapting to the new conditions. “We see that interest in our products in the field of trade finance remains high. Many of our clients have been cooperating with the bank for many years and continue working with us in new conditions. We value such loyalty and strive to provide them with all possible support. We all have to look into the future together, learn to live and work there.”

In such a situation, professionalism and competence of the bank in the specific field of activity comes to the foreground. “I see, according to my experience, that it is very important for a customer to have a possibility to talk to the bank’s employee by using the same language,” said Natalja Perhova. “We, for example, have been operating on the market of financing transactions with grain for a long time and we know all the nuances of the business – production cycles of different crops, specifics of their transportation and storage, logistics, main participants of the industry. All of this considerably simplifies cooperation for the customer with the bank, contributes to mutual understanding and, as a result, implementation of the set tasks.”

As to good news for the market, in the opinion of the expert, this is mostly the reached high results regarding the yield of grain crops. There are grounds to consider that the latest scientific developments and technologies will allow such trend to also be supported further on. And this means that the field for business, regardless of anything, remains wide.

Global Grain is one of the most influential world forums, which annually gathers leading processors of grain, importers and exporters of the products, representatives of transport and financial industries, economists and experts. This year, over 1200 delegates from 550 international companies took part in Global Grain.

Rietumu is a regular participant of Global Grain; the bank is also traditionally one of the partners of the forum. Apart from Rietumu, partners of the conference this year were banks such as BNP Paribas, ABN Amro, Rabobank, big international trading, logistic, transport, insurance, legal companies and other participants of the market.

Rietumu Bank provides a wide range of services in the field of trade finance for international customers operating in different regions of the world.

Eleonora Gailisha
Mass Media and Public Relations
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