Richard Raeburn took up his new position as chairman of the European Association of Corporate Treasurers (EACT) at the beginning of October. He is currently chief executive of the UK’s Association of Corporate Treasurers (ACT) and will be retiring from that role at the end of 2008.
The EACT brings together national treasury associations from across Europe. Formed to address the consequences of the introduction of the euro, its work has been concentrated on the issues arising from the single market for financial services within the European Union (EU). The Financial Services Action Plan (FSAP), as part of the EU’s commitment to the Lisbon Agenda 2010, has given rise to a whole host of issues of regulation, law, and practice that impact the way treasurers, as users of financial services, co-operate.
On these issues, Raeburn said: “At a time of great uncertainty in global financial markets and economies, there is an enormous opportunity and need for the EACT to broaden its representation of the treasury profession in Europe; this will help those working in this field to play their vital role in managing the liquidity, funding, risk and corporate finance for both the largest European companies and the substantial SME sector.”
In an interview with gtnews, Raeburn outlined his view of the treasury profession as a broad-based profession that embraces people who want to be involved with cash and liquidity management but have much higher horizons in terms of risk, corporate finance, pensions, insurance and tax. “The EACT has a great opportunity to help the interests of treasury professional bodies across Europe by broadening its own platform of representation and interests. We can play to the strengths of the treasury profession in the wider sense and are not exclusively occupied with the cash and payments issues that have been central to the challenges coming from the FSAP,” he said.
One of Raeburn’s key interests is in responding to the needs and concerns of the treasury professionals in the fast developing ‘new Europe’ countries, such as Hungary, Slovakia, Czech Republic and Poland. “All of these countries are enthusiastic supporters of the EACT but have probably felt relatively less concerned with the details of the payments and other areas that the EACT has focused its attention on,” said Raeburn. “They are more concerned to see how we can share the body of knowledge that treasury professionals have between them for the benefit of people starting treasury careers in other countries where there is a shorter tradition of management focus in our field.”
Raeburn takes over the chairmanship from Olivier Brissaud, president of ATEB, the Belgium treasury association, who will remain as the EACT board member for European affairs.
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