Botswana Speaks blog

Banks' IT systems hosted locally

Assistant Minister of Finance and Development Planning, Mr Vincent Seretse says all the commercial banks in Botswana are subsidiaries of foreign banks with operations in many countries and markets, but their information technology systems are hosted and maintained locally.
He informed Parliament on Wednesday that while the banks' IT systems were maintaned locally, they were also integrated in to regional hubs or international group IT centres.

Minister Seretse said the South African subsidiary banks’ IT systems were hosted in Botswana and integrated into parent bank IT systems hosted in South Africa.
He noted that similarly other commercial banks IT systems were hosted and maintained both in Botswana and group level, in countries such as Kenya, United Kingdom, Hong Kong, India, Malaysia and Singapore. The IT group centres, he said, were shared centrally by all subsidiaries of banks across Africa and the world.
Mr Seretse said deployment of such systems and services in Botswana became an extension of an existing computer network from the designated group IT centre.
He said there were several reasons given by the concerned banks for hosting and maintaining their IT systems in a centralised environment, which given the advances in technology, were beneficial to both the banks and users of such systems.
He stated that a centralised IT infrastructure allowed for instant access to such banks’ network anywhere in the world, better management of IT group policies, including risk, governance and compliance issues as well as ensuring uniformity and ease of monitoring and more significantly, economies of scale were realised.
As a result of the economies of scale associated with centralisation, he noted that banks were able to deploy products much quicker and cheaper across jurisdictions, than if the systems were hosted separately.
The cost of banking IT systems was dependent upon the nature, size and complexity of both the system and banking organisation.
Mr Seretse stated that on the basis of information obtained from banks, on average, the annual costs for hosting and mainatenance of banks’ IT systems ranged from P3.6 million for small banks, non-sophisticated systems to P33.5 million for the large, complex banking system.
He said it was the view of government that the current arrangements for banking IT systems in Botswana added value for bank customers in that the cost of banking services became relatively cheaper, more convenient and had allowed for improvements in the provision of banking services.
Mr Seretse was answering a question from the Member of Parliament for South East South, Mr Odirile Motlhale who had asked him to state the number of commercial banks operating in Botswana and had their banking systems hosting and maintenance done in Botswana.
MP Motlhale also requested him to give reasons as to those that were not done in Botswana and state the average annual cost of hosting and maintaining a banking system. ENDS

Source : BOPA
Author : BOPA
Location : Gaborone

Event : Parliament

Date : Apr 17 Wed,2013

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