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Palestine's Best Bank for Asia 2019

Bank of Palestine

Hashim Shawa, Chairman, Bank of Palestine.jpg
Hashim Shawa, Bank of Palestine

Bank of Palestine might be easy to overlook at first. Ensconced in a small territory (the West Bank) in an extremely troubled and uncertain part of the world, squeezed between Israel and Jordan, it is not a big lender by any measure.

But the Ramallah-based lender, which reported a net profit of $38.8 million in the third quarter of 2018, up slightly from the same period a year ago, has quietly but consistently been expanding its reach into Asia in recent years.

It has a large and growing international correspondent banking network that includes 12 big lenders in nine Asian markets.

The Palestinian lender issued a little over $10 million in documenting credits via its correspondent banks in the first nine months of 2018, helping its Asia-based clients – mostly import-export firms – to obtain credit and to hedge against currency risk. Bank of Palestine is a small but impressive lender from a tough place: it is well run by its chairman, Hashim Shawa, and quietly doing solid work across the region.

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