A Message from the Chair – March 2021

On March 19 BAFT’s Board Chair, Mark Garfield, published his monthly communication to the wider BAFT membership.

Tomorrow, March 20, is recognized as the first day of spring in the Northern Hemisphere. Spring is a time of change, and the world is facing changes apart from the change of seasons. In our unique professional discipline, we are often expected to explain and instruct our corporate boards, at conference tables, albeit virtually, and to others about the changing world of trade finance.

It can be difficult to keep up with the latest conventions and standards in finance. Where is a trusted source to go to for those standards? BAFT’s Library of Documents is a great resource to keep you prepared and your expertise up to date.

Supply chain finance has received a substantial amount of press coverage over the last few weeks. It is a finance structure that I needed to understand better, and BAFT’s CEO, Tod Burwell, directed me to several informational resources at Within the Library of Documents, under the homepage’s Policy header, if you navigate to the Industry Definitions and Guidelines section there is a BAFT guidance document “Payables Finance Principles,” a cogent and complete summary of supply chain finance. Under the same Industry Definitions and Guidelines section are additional supply chain finance informational resources and pieces.

BAFT’s Library of Documents is a wonderful source for the latest whitepapers, comment letters, practices, procedures, and policies on a variety of topics important to transaction banking. Take advantage of this current and valuable resource for yourself and your organization.

Speaking of spring, this time a year ago, the pandemic began to raise its ugly head resulting in challenges, disruptions, and loss of life. A poet once said, “I rejoice in each new Spring for it’s as if it has never been before.” My hope is just that, that this new season of vaccines will bring renewal and life to our world. After all, the United Nations designated March 20 as the “International Day of Happiness”. May it be for you and yours.

Mark Garfield
BAFT Chair
Head of Global Financial Institutions
Zions Bancorporation