Chris Middleton reports on the launch of a new collaborative FinTech programme in Latin America, overseen by the UK.

A group of British finance and technology experts visited the Chilean capital, Santiago, last month to inaugurate a new FinTech collaboration network in Latin America, according to an announcement from the British government this week.

The aim is to create FinTech-friendly policies in Central and South America and enable research and policy support for regulators throughout the region – in particular those in Pacific Alliance countries, which already have guidelines to harmonise FinTech policies.

The initiative was launched by the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (CCAF) with the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (UNECLAC), following “an intense agenda of activities” in Chile last year. The network is the third created outside the UK by the Centre, after others in China and Sub-Saharan Africa.

CCAF, part of the Judge Business School at the University of Cambridge, is an international academic research institute dedicated to the study of regulations, digital payment platforms, and alternative finance models, such as cryptocurrencies, crowdfunding, online marketplaces, and peer-to-peer lending.

The new Latin America FinTech programme is supported by the British government as an observer country, via the GREAT campaign, the cross-government initiative designed to encourage people to do business, invest, and study in the UK as the country grapples with Brexit.

Via UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), the GREAT campaign has also had a presence at recent expert missions to the US, China, Japan, South Korea, and other countries, which seek new partnership opportunities for British startups and enterprises.

  • In related news, the lack of standard terminology for cryptoassets and blockchain programmes in different parts of the world is hampering the development of a coordinated regulatory response, according to the first comparative global study of cryptoasset regulation by the CCAF.

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