On Monday 14/11/2016, Bank of Palestine celebrated the inauguration of its new branch in Al-Bireh, with participation by a group of businesspersons and the Bank’s customers, in addition to representatives of official institutions, civil society, and the private sector. The ceremony was attended by Mr. Hashim Shawa, Chairman and General Manager of Bank of Palestine, Mr. Azzam Al Shawa, Governor of Palestine Monetary Authority, Mr. Fawzi Abed, Mayor of Al-Bireh Municipality, Mr. Farouk Shami, Chairman of Global Farouk System, and Mr. Hamdan Barghouti, Deputy Governor of Ramallah and Al-Bireh governorate, in addition to a group of journalists and media.

With the inauguration of its new sub-branch Al-Bireh, Bank of Palestine maintains the largest banking network in Palestine that includes 67 branches and sub-branches, and more than 130 ATMs distributed across various Palestinian villages, cities and areas.

Mr. Azzam Al Shawa, Governor of Palestine Monetary Authority, commended the Bank’s journey, which has a history full of efforts to advance and stimulate the Palestinian economy. He emphasized that the Bank continues to leave clear impact on the economy and society to become distinctive on the national level. Mr. Al Shawa indicated that Palestine Monetary Authority is preparing to soon become a central bank, reserving a right to issue Palestinian pounds.

In a significant development, Mr. Al Shawa indicted to the interest of Palestine Monetary Authority in strengthening the role of women and raising their awareness about the importance of benefiting from banking services. Mr. Al Shawa indicated that the Monetary Authority plans to allocate one exclusive day during the next year to encourage Palestinian women to enter the business world, by organizing events and activities within the Palestinian banking sector.

Mr. Fawzi Abed expressed his gratitude to Bank of Palestine for its continuous investment in Palestine, and its support to various development projects in Al-Bireh. He emphasized that Bank of Palestine represents a significant economic icon that makes all Palestinians everywhere proud. Mr. Abed indicated that Al-Bireh Municipality embraces 16 banking institutions, and around 36 ATMS. He confirmed that the Municipality continuously seeks to attract and embrace leading institutions to contribute in serving the citizens and residents of the city. He revealed a strategic plan prepared by the Municipality that aims to encourage investment throughout the next four years.

Mr. Hashim Shawa presented an overview of Bank of Palestine’s journey, which was founded in 1960. He indicated that despite the political and economic challenges that our country went through, the Bank continued to grow and expand under a clear vision and a solid strategy. The Bank developed distinctive banking services and programs that meet the needs of all citizens, to become the largest Bank operating in Palestine, with a network that includes 67 branches and sub-branches and more than 130 ATMs that cover all Palestinian cities, villages and rural areas. The Bank was also able to develop innovative and leading banking solutions that gained the trust of its customers who amount to around 800 thousand customers.

Mr. Shawa indicated that the Bank achieved distinctive financial results at the end of the third quarter in 2016. The Bank’s assets increased to reach USD4.2 billion, and the customers’ deposits increased to amount to USD3.2 billion. The credit facilitations also increased to USD2.2 billion, and Bank of Palestine’s market share amounted to around 34%. He added that Bank of Palestine is a leading institution that seeks to support, develop and stimulate a robust and sustainable Palestinian economy; the Bank depends on continuous advancement of its performance and the development of distinctive services that meet the needs of its customers.

Mr. Farouk Shami presented his investment experience around the world. He explained that the most important investment was through Bank of Palestine, which owns the most significant incentives and revenue to its shareholders, society and customers. Mr. Shami added that Bank of Palestine is the only Bank that allocates 6% of its annual net profit for development and social projects; he emphasized that strong strategic relationship between him and the Bank.

Mr. Hamdan Barghouti stated that the Palestinian private sector operates under difficult political and economic conditions, nevertheless, the sector faces these challenges with high courage despite the related risks. He indicated that Bank of Palestine left its kind impact in the Palestinian economy and society, and that its contributions towards the Palestinian society cannot be forgotten, as the Bank is a leader in the field of economic development, and its investments and expansion inside the country is a proof to its true loyalty towards Palestine.