The global banking sector is facing a time where there is a growing need for highly skilled people in the micro-finance sector in addition to specialised areas of the larger banks.

The shortage of skills and escalating competitiveness is adding pressure on the banking sector to find innovative ways to operate more cost-effectively, offer new products and enhance the services they offer.
The BANKSETA International Conference, held every two years for the banking sector, will this year focus on trends and the global view of banking. The conference aims to bring research and benchmarking relevant to the core of skills development across all banks, and communicate this to the sector in order to address the skills shortage currently being experienced in the banking sector.
The theme for the 2008 event is Globalisation and the Future of Banking. While BANKSETA's main focus is skills development and transformation of the sector, this year’s conference also has a strong focus on leadership, which was identified by previous attendees as a topic worth discussion.
Keynote speakers will address current trends in the industry, look at the products Africa is spearheading as well as highlight what the future holds for the banking sector in terms of innovation and leadership strategies. Delegates will gain detailed insight into the future of banking in Africa.
BANKSETA programme alumni will also present what was learned at an international level during their development programmes.
Some of the guest speakers include:
* Ferial Haffajee – Editor in Chief of Mail & Guardian;
* Daniel Silke – Independent Political Analyst specializing in South Africa and Global/International Relations;
* Dr Hischam El-Agamy – Director of Corporate Development for the prestigious International Institute of Management Development (IMD);
* Arthur Goldstuck – South Africa and Africa’s leading speaker on Internet Commerce, technologies and possibilities;
* Gloria Serobe – Non-Executive Director: Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE); Economic Advisor: Accelerated and Shared Growth Initiative for South Africa;
* Tony Manning – independent consultant for 20 years, specialising in strategy design and execution;
* Thebe Ikalafeng – named as one of the country's top 10 thinkers in marketing in a survey done by Markinor and dubbed "Mr. Brand" by the Mail & Guardian;
* Mthunzi Mdwaba – a lawyer who developed a passion for IT;
* Nick Geimer – Head of Consulting and Analytics (JHB) – PIC Solutions;
* James Cronk – Financial Services Director of Enterprise Verticals for the Emerging Markets at Cisco UK;
* Stafford Masie – country manager for Google SA; and
* Hamza Farooqui – board member  of WorldSpace Southern Africa (Pty) Ltd and Islamic finance specialist.
BANKSETA will use the event to showcase its flagship programmes and initiatives such as the International Executive Development Programme (IEDP) and its expansion into Canada and the UK, as well as the Women’s Development Programme which has enjoyed success in placing women in senior positions in the banking sector since its inception last year.
The fourth BANKSETA International Conference will take place on August 20-21 at the Sandton Sun, Johannesburg.