Financial institutions in Malaysia are increasingly embracing financial technology (fintech) through digital services and blockchain-based platforms, according to a report by The Edge Markets.
For example, CIMB Group Holdings Bhd has partnered with Ripple to offer blockchain-enabled remittance services, while HSBC Bank Malaysia Bhd is reportedly developing a blockchain-based trade finance platform.
Digital payments have become the norm, as Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank) was the first bank in the country to introduce a digital wallet in 2016. Today, the bank’s QRPay option is offered at numerous shops.
Regtech, or regulatory technology, is another innovative area under research by financial institutions. With regtech, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning are used to improve regulations and compliance in the banking industry.
For lending services, many banks have seen the potential for AI, which can be used to search for or scan documents related to contracts, as opposed to using staff to go through each contract manually.
An early adopter is Malaysian RHB Bank Bhd, who has already been collaborating with RinggitPlus since 2017 to offer online loan applications using chatbot technology.
Though the necessary technology is being developed at a rapid pace, banks remain reluctant to roll out new services and are concerned about introducing changes in the finance industry too quickly. KPMG Malaysia revealed that though 43% of banks surveyed had a digital plan, only 19% felt that it was effective.
To fully promote fintech in the banking industry, leaders and experts must collaborate to ensure that digitalization is a priority for banks as well as customers.
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