Palestine Islamic Bank Opens Its 33rd Branch in Betunia

Under the patronage of the Governor of the Palestine Monetary Authority, Palestine Islamic Bank opened its 33rd branch in the town of Betunia. A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held with the presence of Dr. Riyad Abu Shihadeh, who holds the title of Assistant Governor of the Monetary Authority for Financial Stability, on behalf of the Governor of Palestine Monetary Authority, also Mr. Bayan Qasem, the General Manager of Palestine Islamic Bank, and Mr. Mazen Sinnokrot, Member of the Board of Directors of the Bank, and Mr. Ribhi Dawleh, the head of Betunia Municipality and Executive Management, along with a number of Merchants, Businessmen, national and prestigious figures in the governorate.

General Manager Of Palestine Islamic Bank; Mr. Bayan Qasem said that “the expansion in the number of branches and offices of the PIB is accompanied by growth and development of the financial indications along with the services provided to the clients”, he demonstrated the financial returns acquired by the bank, also he described those returns to be promising since the bank's profits for the first half of this year exceeded USD 8 million before. Mr. Bayan pointed that the bank is following its strategic expansion plan for the year 2017 where it aims to reach 37 branches and offices by the end of this current year, Mr. Qasem announced during his speech that the bank will soon open two new offices in Ramallah and Al-Bireh governorates where both offices will be based in a vibrant locations at Ersal street and Ein Yabroud village.

Mr. Qasem pointed out to the strategic location Betunia town has, geographical wise and economical wise, Betunia is considered to be the main line that connects the West of Ramallah with South of Ramallah, which makes it an attractive spot for investors, this is believed to enhance the town’s development and economy.

Mr. Qasem also mentioned that the bank is currently working on a redevelopment for its electronic services in order to reach a higher professional level and meet client’s needs and facilitate the completion of their banking transactions, he drew attention to the fact that these efforts come within a framework of financial inclusion that the Palestine Monetary Authority is working to consolidate.

He elaborated by affirming that in addition to developing its services, Palestine Islamic Bank is committed to enhancing its social contribution that target developing the local community by interacting with it and meeting its needs, he said that more than 35% of the Bank’s social responsibility budget is allocated to support the Educational and Health sectors.

Mr. Qasem extended his thanks to Palestine Monetary Authority for the great efforts they put towards developing and empowering the Palestinian Banking sector, a support that promotes the growth of the national economy in a balanced manner, he praised the level cooperation shown by Palestine Monetary Authority staff towards banks, something according to him: “allows us to reach the best banking practices”.

He also extended his deep thanks to the Municipality of Betunia for its support and the facilitation they have provided in order to open the Bank’s office, affirming that having this branch is promising to open the gate for investments opportunities, especially with the industrial and commercial importance that the town holds.

In his speech during the opening ceremony, Dr. Riyad Abu Shihadeh (Assistant Governor of the Monetary Authority for Financial Stability) extended the greetings and congratulations sent from His Excellency the Governor of the Monetary Authority, Mr. Azzam Al-Shawwa, he praised the expansion policy Palestine Islamic Bank is following.

By the end of last August, the number of offices and branches in all governorates of the country reached 33 branches and offices, which meets Palestine Monetary Authority strategy and enhance the financial inclusion in Palestine.

Dr. Abu Shihadeh indicated that Palestine Islamic Bank is considered one the leading financial institutions in Islamic Banking in Palestine, characterized by the diversity of its products and contributions to social responsibility, he pointed out that up to end of August of this year, customer deposits at Palestine Islamic Bank amounted to $751.1 million, while the total direct facilities amounted to $583.4 million.

Dr. Riyad Abu Shihadeh expressed the pride Palestine Monetary Authority have towards the durability in performance, the speed of development and deployment the banking system has shown, some banks were able to expand outside of Palestine, the banking system in Palestine managed to reach high rankings that got recognized by international financing organizations. Along with banking indicators that reflects the development and safety of the banking system.

Dr. Abu Shihadeh pointed out that Net Assets of the banking sector reached about 15.1 billion dollars in 31/08/2017, the facility portfolio is about 7.7 billion dollars, while clients deposits reached 11.4 billion dollars, where the number of employees was about 7000 employee end of last June, and the number of branches and offices all over the country is about 234 office and branch.

The Assistant Governor of the Monetary Authority explained that they function in 3 Islamic Banks which are: Palestine Islamic Bank, Arab Islamic Bank, and Safa Bank. The total number of offices and branches that belongs to Islamic banks reached about 54 branches and office spreading all over Palestine. The net assets of Islamic banks amounted to 2.1 billion dollars, the portfolio of loans granted was 1.19 billion dollars, and customer deposits amounted to 1.6 billion dollars, he pointed out to the fact that the share of Islamic Banks is still modest where it consists only 13.7% of the banking sector in Palestine, with a huge opportunity for development and increase in the market share for Islamic Banking in Palestine.

From his end, Mr. Ribhi Dawleh, head of Betunia Municipality congratulated Palestine Islamic Bank management for opening its new office in Betunia Town; he praised the efforts made by the Bank’s management to make a presence in the area through its new office. He added that the presence of Palestine Islamic Bank in the area will have a prominent role in supporting institutions and investors on the same level. Mr. Dawleh ended his speech by calling upon the bank's management to continue supporting and advancing the Betunia town through its programs of social responsibility.