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The Digital Future for Financial Markets

See the letter written by several associations of financial institutions, including ISDA and ICMA – International Capital Market Association:

“The financial services industry finds itself at a crossroads”, as rightly pointed out in this letter.
Institutions will succeed only in “embracing transformation change” through “greater coordination” and using transformative technologies such as Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT).

This is a question of life and death for the financial sector. The 2008 #crisis was the first warning, the #covid pandemic is the second one. The third may be the last.

Such change requires courage from leaders, vision beyond short-term issues, and skills to conduct this transformation. Courage is key, as this is a real upheaval we are talking about here: the kind that was achieved many years ago by car manufacturers and telecommunications companies, with very well known – and dire – consequences for some companies.

To sustain the change, the associations have drafted Principles and Objectives they commit to follow:

Principles and Objectives


1. Support the development of common, interoperable industry standard models for financial transactions and processes.

2. Work with our members and relevant authorities to promote alignment among disparate data standards and greater consistency of regulatory requirements across the market.

3. Promote  the  adoption  of  standardized  and  simplified  legal  documentation where  appropriate  in  the  relevant market.


4. Explore and pursue the delivery of industry-standard documentation in digital formats.

5. Support the development of robust legal agreement data models aimed at connecting contractual terms with supporting processes and data.

6. Work with our members and relevant authorities to establish greater legal and regulatory certainty on the use of electronic contracts and signatures.


7. Distribute new standards on an industry-wide, commercially reasonable basis where possible to support the development and implementation of interoperable and efficient technology solutions.

8. Establish  a  robust  and  inclusive  governance  framework  around  the  development,  operation,  and  maintenance of any mutualised technology standards


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