CFDG urges charities to review their foreign exchange strategy this summer

22nd August 2011

Charity Finance Directors’ Group has published the latest version of its Foreign Currency Map. In a report last year, it was shown that the sector could save between £20 and £50 million a year through proactive and effective foreign exchange procurement. The map will help charities to make substantial savings through improving their procurement processes.

Most of the UK’s leading banks and foreign exchange providers have contributed to the Foreign Exchange Map, which details the currencies and services they provide. The map updates a version in CFDG’s report Better FX, produced in collaboration with Stamp Out Poverty earlier this year.

Jane Tully, CFDG’s head of policy and public affairs, commented: ‘One of the key messages coming from Better FX was that charities should not restrict themselves to one currency provider – comparing rates and engaging in competitive tender saves money. Publishing the latest map serves as a reminder to all charities using foreign currency that making even small changes can reap big savings. We hope that this summer finance directors will think about foreign exchange - not just for their holidays, but for their charities too’.

David Hillman, director, Stamp Out Poverty, commented: ‘We had great feedback for Better FX from a number of charities which were previously paying over the odds for their foreign currency. However, there is still much to be done to raise awareness of the potential savings and improve sector practices which is why we are delighted that CFDG has published the updated Foreign Currency Map.’

The information in the chart is intended to help charities reduce the time spent identifying currency providers to work with. It is a valuable, easy to use tool for any INGO or charity with dealings in foreign currency.

- Ends -

Notes to Editors:

1. The Foreign Currency Map is available on the CFDG website.

2. CFDG is the charity that champions best practice in finance management in the voluntary sector. Our training and development programmes enable finance managers to give the essential leadership on finance strategy and management that their charities need. With more than 1,700 members, managing over £21bn, we are uniquely placed to challenge regulation which threatens the effective use of charity funds. For more information, please see www.cfdg.org.uk

3. Stamp Out Poverty is a network of more than 40 organisations including some of the UK’s leading charities including Oxfam, Christian Aid, Save the Children and War on Want, working on ways to bridge the funding gap required to meet the Millennium Development Goals. It is one of the founding members of the popular Robin Hood Tax campaign. For more information, please see www.stampoutpoverty.org.

4. Missing Millions, released in 2009 by Stamp Out Poverty, identified potential sector-wide savings of £20-50 million through effective foreign exchange procurement. Better FX, produced by CFDG and Stamp Out Poverty, was a practical guide seeking to show how this could be done.

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