WSBI Latin America & Caribbean
Representing financial institutions and federations, the WSBI Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC) looks to create and share knowledge with one another and to raise awareness of WSBI and its positions with people in the region.
The Latin American & Caribbean Regional Group (GRULAC) was established to bring together the members in the region to keep close exchange on specific issues and to promote the exchange of best practices and create opportunities for business cooperation.
Representing 12 financial institutions from 11 countries, the group’s members meet at least once a year at annual regional group meetings. Those meetings serve as a platform for exchange of experiences among members and also provides potential members or other interested international or regional organizations a way to keep up to date on savings and retail banking as well as WSBI efforts in the region.
Cooperation between WSBI members in the group ranges from contact building and exchanges of information to the development of concrete business opportunities, at bilateral or multilateral level. For example, members host training workshops and one-on-one study visits for fellow members, sign business cooperation memoranda of understanding, exchange expertise and enter into reciprocal business partnerships.
Diego Fernando Prieto Riviera, president of Banca Caja Social in Colombia, leads the Latin American & Caribbean Regional Group. WSBI regional group presidents (RGP) are appointed for three years terms among the top management of member banks in the region. His term ends in 2018.
Macario Armando Rosales Rosas, president of Fedecredito in El Salvador, is a member of this group and additionally serves as WSBI Treasurer. He previously led the GRULAC group from 2009 to 2012.
Why their work matters
The shifting economic order that emerged after the global financial crisis has given the Latin American and Caribbean region significant attention and has generated a record international climate for growth.
Representing members that include federations, together translating to 84 financial institutions, the GRULAC group address region-wide structural changes needed to extend the access to financial services. To date, focus has been placed on digital banking, payments systems, micro and small and medium sized enterprises (MSMEs), risk management and overall savings mobilization.
The group aims to generate and share knowledge and to advocate for members to:
raise members' profiles as financial pillars of their national economies, vis-à-vis national and international authorities;
promote the development of socially committed financial institutions in the region while conveying the right messages for a conducive regulatory framework;
create opportunities for exchanges of information, training and technical assistance;
channel business opportunities for member institutions; and
expand WSBI membership in the region.
The Annual Regional Group Meeting (RGM) is a forum to discuss and drive issues relevant to the region's retail banking sector. It also serves as a platform for cooperation between regional banks and provides input into the WSBI overall strategy.
The GRULAC Steering Committee brings together top leaders from members in the region who are committed to promoting WSBI. They aim to shape the regional group's future positioning and visibility in the region as well as positioning WSBI as a trusted, leading voice on retail banking worldwide.
Facts and Figures
Data updated through December 2014
- 13 members in 11 countries
- 119,038,390 clients served
- Total assets: US$462,259 billion
- 6684 outlets / branches
- 142,885 employees
An important role of regional groups is to provide imput to overall WSBI messages provided to G20 leaders. GRULAC Group members advocate as necessary with regional parties, authorities and national regulatory bodies. Members have regular contact with regional and mulitlateral organisations such as the:
Association of Supervisors of Banks of the Americas (ASBA);
Central American Bank for Economic Integration (BCIE/CABEI);
Center for Latin American Monetary Studies (CEMLA);
Inter-American Development Bank (IDB); and
La Federación Latinoamericana de Bancos (FELABAN).
Knowledge sharing between GRULAC Regional Group members help boost their business development efforts. The group aims to promote members’ best practices, to transfer the knowledge among members, fostering regional cooperation – members helping members.
Knowledge sharing efforts aim to highlight and address areas such as digitalization, banking innovation, financial inclusion, and financing MSMEs.