Sustainability in South African banking.
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The local banking industry has many challenges to face in the newly democratized South Africa. This study reviews these challenges, with special reference to sustainable business practice. It commences with an overview of the global business environment and more specifically, the challenges facing the international financial services sector with respect to sustainability. The effects of globalisation, as well as modernization, are used as key influencers in determining the external global environment. The international background is used to determine those factors that filter through to the South African banking sector, which is viewed as a new participant to the global economy. Complemented with the above, a high level review is performed of the local specific challenges facing banks in post-apartheid South Africa. This includes the challenge of providing accessible banking to the traditionally un-banked, as well as the implementation of black economic empowerment in the local financial services sector. With the above background in mind local banks are being evaluated on what they are currently doing in leveraging of sustainability in producing stakeholder value. The five capitals framework has been used to identify the level of implementation of sustainability in the current business models of South African banks. This status quo has been used as the foundation for making suitable recommendations to meet both the local and global challenges identified in the first part of the study.