Overseas Bankers Association of Australia

The Overseas Bankers Association of Australia

Objectives of the Association
To provide the means whereby overseas bank representatives may meet together on a social basis to
maintain personal and business contacts; and to enhance relations between overseas bank
representatives and the resident Australian banking, commercial and government organisations. The
Association is a non-profit and non-political association.

Moving Forward
As a mature association of 31 years standing, we look at the role foreign banks have had in the
development of Australia, the economy and the thousands of individual Australians who have worked for
and learned their skills from foreign banks. We also look to the involvement that foreign banks will have in
the future development of the Australian economy.

The Overseas Bankers Association of Australia (OBAA) has developed to the point of recognising the
work done by long standing members of the foreign bank community (awarding the first Life
Member in 2008) and in 2010 in keeping with the development of the association the OBAA celebrated its 25th anniversary.

The first meeting of the OBAA was held on 27 August 1984 at the Imperial Services Club in Sydney. 52
representatives of the 101 foreign banks operating in Sydney at the time attended the meeting.

A Steering Committee was established and at the end of January 1985 a letter was sent to all foreign
banks represented in Australia advising that a general meeting would be held on 20 February 1985 to
approve the constitution and elect the office bearers. 72 representatives from 61 foreign banks attended
the meeting.

The first meeting of the new Committee was held on 18 April 1985. A letter from the Federal Treasurer,
Paul Keating, was read welcoming the formation of the OBAA and giving the Government’s official
recognition. The Governor General, Sir Ninian Stephen, also conveyed best wishes for the success of the

The guest of honour and speaker at the Foundation Luncheon was Sir Bede Callaghan, former Managing
Director of the Commonwealth Bank and at the time the Chairman of the Foreign Investment Review
Board. Guests from the Reserve Bank, Australian Bankers Association and Australia Merchant Bankers
Association were also invited to attend. 97 members and guests attended the foundation luncheon.

The OBAA Today
The OBAA continues to thrive and currently 40 banks enjoy membership of the association.

The OBAA is currently managed by a Committee consisting of 12 bankers representing 8 foreign banks and 4 domestic banks. The association conducts functions on an annual basis for the benefit of its members and these range from cultural nights and thought leadership lunches to golf days and ‘young banker’ networking events. Membership is at the institutional level which enables all staff of a member institution to attend functions at the ‘member’ rate.