Regional: Best Bank for CSR 2020
It is now commonplace for banks to reel off a list of CSR accomplishments, but it is hard to imagine any of them doing more than Banque Misr, which has made an impressive, wide-ranging commitment to CSR.
Start with the basic stuff. Does the Egyptian lender, under the guidance of chairman Mohamed El-Etreby, support micro and small enterprises? Yes. How about companies run by women? Definitely. What about the underprivileged? Put another tick in that box.
It works with a swathe of NGOs, including Misr El-Kheir Foundation, the Orman Charity Association and the national Network for Integrated Development, all under its central aegis: ‘citizen’s right to a better life’. The bank spent E£760 million ($48 million) on its CSR activities in 2019, up 27% year on year.
Banque Misr works to aid financial inclusion among the young and disenfranchised, by organizing national seminars and workshops; its ‘Tahweesha Bezyada’ account is designed to help bring younger and smaller-scale savers into the banking industry.
Banque Misr connects entrepreneurs with a host of industry bodies, from the Egyptian Manufacturers Association to the National Tanneries Union and the Egyptian Pharmacists Syndicate.
Yes, Banque Misr’s CSR programme is a national effort that links together businesses and people and government and trade associations. But it is also local in flavour. It knows that not every SME will become Facebook and that corporate responsibility means improving the lot of those low down in the economic pile, as much as it means helping those toward the top of the pyramid.
Banque Misr doesn’t just have a good corporate social responsibility programme, it has a great one.