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CISI helps build vibrant new centre in heart of Asia

The CISI is delighted to be working with the Astana International Financial Centre (AIFC) to help build the right skills base to enable young Kazakhs to fuel the growth expected of this new venture at the heart of Eurasia.

Our broad but targeted spread of exams, covering capital markets and corporate finance, green and Islamic finance, and private banking and wealth management, allied to skills in investment operations and financial technologies, will help our friends in the AIFC meet one of their key objectives – that the new centre’s standards should meet the best world practices for local capital market development. We look forward to helping the new centre flourish, and to watching it grow from frontier to emerging market status in the global investment indices.

Simon Culhane, Chartered FCSI, CEO of the CISI

The centre’s regulator, the Astana Financial Centre Authority (AFSA), joined the CISI as a full Corporate Supporter at the time of the AIFC’s launch in July 2018. In October 2018, the CISI opened an exam testing centre in AFSA’s office.

c. 45,000 Members in over 100 countries
c. 40,000 Exams taken in 81 countries

AIFC and the Global Financial Innovation Network

The centre’s growth was further boosted in February 2019 when it joined the Global Financial Innovation Network (GFIN), a newly-formed alliance of some 30 regulators and other organisations including the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority, the International Monetary Fund, and the World Bank Group, committed to: (1) collaborate and share experience of innovation in their respective markets; (2) exchange knowledge and lessons learned in RegTech related matters; and (3) provide firms with an environment to test cross-border solutions.

The GFIN initiative on cross-border testing will allow firms to simultaneously test innovative products, services or business models in multiple jurisdictions, including Kazakhstan, the United Kingdom, USA and elsewhere.

“We are pleased to be part of this initiative. GFIN will facilitate greater regulatory cooperation between like-minded authorities to foster a sustainable global financial ecosystem. This network is an extension of AIFC’s commitment to further facilitate cross-border financial activities in a fair, transparent and efficient manner,” said Asylbek Davletov, Chief FinTech Officer of the AFSA.

Professor Alexander Van de Putte, Chairman of the AIFC Academic Council, added: “The CISI’s comprehensive suite of exams – and its world-class continuing professional development services – will help us exploit this important new network to the hilt.”


CISI test centre launch during IOSCO World Investor Week

AIFC ran a major series of events as part of the International Organisation of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) World Investor Week in October 2018, attracting more than 3,600 delegates across the country. A special World Investor Day in Astana on 6 October featured a keynote speech from Marshall Bailey, Chairman of London Clearing House and of the UK’s Financial Services Compensation Scheme, and an Independent Director of London Stock Exchange Group. During that event, Yernur Rysmagambetov, Chief of the AIFC Bureau for CPD, and George Littlejohn MCSI, Senior Adviser to the CISI, opened the CISI’s first exam test centre in central Asia.

Further information

For further information on the AIFC-CISI partnership, please contact:

Assiya Karibay, Head, AIFC BCPD Career Centre - a.karibay@aifc.kz
George Littlejohn, MCSI, Senior Adviser, CISI - george.littlejohn@cisi.org