Bank of Palestine and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) signed a joint partnership agreement for the development of banking services relevant to medium, small and micro enterprises, as well as women banking services and services relevant to the development of risk minimization systems. The signing ceremony took place at the Bank of Palestine main HQ in Ramallah.
Pursuant to the agreement Bank of Palestine will develop programs relevant to financing medium, small and micro enterprises in Palestine in cooperation with the IFC and after the approval of stakeholders. Medium, small and micro enterprises constitute more than 90% of investment projects in all the economic sectors in Palestine and occupy more than 87% of the Palestinian workforce. Moreover, Bank of Palestine will adopt international new principles and standards for advocating its risk systems. The IFC will oversee the implementation of those principles and standards with the bank’s staff.
In addition, under the agreement with IFC and believing in women potential to contribute to the economic development, Bank of Palestine will develop new programs and projects for Palestinian women with the view of upgrading the living standards of Palestinian families.
For his part, Chairman of the Board and General Manager of Bank of Palestine Mr Hashim Al-Shawa welcomed Mr Luke Haggarty from the IFC, the accompanying delegation and guests from women organizations. Mr Hashim briefed the delegation of the progress realized by Bank of Palestine since 1960 pointing to the different services provided by the bank. He added the bank has embarked on developing programs to finance medium, small and micro enterprises which constitute a considerable segment of the Palestinian economy. According to Al-Shawa, the bank will adopt IFC’s standards to minimize risks and advocate risk minimization systems.
Mr Haggarty expressed admiration for the Bank of Palestine achievements during the past few years. He stated that financing medium, small and micro enterprises is a crucial factor in invigorating the private sector, adding that the IFC partnership with Bank of Palestine attests to the fact that developing products that serve businesswomen will contribute significantly to the increase of women participation in economy and enhance economic growth.