Palestine's Best Bank for Asia 2019
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.