Dutch Finance Min. calls for national Fintech leadership

Jeroen Dijsselbloem (Photo: Rijksoverheid.nl). (Jeroen Dijsselbloem (Photo: Rijksoverheid.nl))

Finance Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem wants a liaison officer to provide leadership for the FinTech Sector, similar to the role Neelie Kroes is playing as startup-ambassador, he said in an interview at B.Amsterdam, the Financieele Dagblad reports.

"We are looking to see if we can, in the line of the startup ambassador Neelie Kroes, give a followup to Startup Delta, but with a strong emphasis on FinTech. A link between policy, supervision, laws and regulation and the startups, the financial sector and the investment world", he said to the newspaper, adding that it is the Ministries of Finance and Economic Affairs' responsibility to find such a liaison officer. "The government should not take over or dominate it, and certainly not regulate it to pieces, but remain alert to developments."

The Finance Minister sees a lot of potential in FinTech. "Financial systems are about properly assessing, recognizing and pricing risks; FinTech does all that. It discloses information and assess and analyzes very quickly and connect the right price to it. The financial sector has not always been good with that in the past."

Dijsselbloem sees the biggest possibilities in expanding the availability of credit and financing an making it cheaper and faster, for example through peer-to-peer lending.

He expects that Dutch banks will be able to hang on to their market share and survive FinTech, if they can adapt and utilize this technology. "My expectation is that Dutch banks will manage to use many of these new technologies. They have shown, especially when compared to their peers in Europe, that they rather quickly implement the capabilities of technology in their business. The bank of the future will undoubtedly be very different. Whether they continue to exist depends on their ability to adapt."