Latest articles from Middle East

Blom Bank

Lebanese banks look further afield for growth

May 1, 2013

With Lebanon's economy feeling the strains of political infighting and the two-year civil war in neighbouring Syria, its banks have been looking overseas in search of growth, establishing footholds in countries such as Turkey and Iraq, as well as seeking to consolidate their presence in Egypt and the Gulf.

Mohammad Al-Hashel

Kuwait central bank governor takes prudent approach

April 2, 2013

Mohammad Al-Hashel is settling into his role as Kuwait’s central bank governor, taking over responsibility for a banking sector that is well capitalised and highly liquid. 

The Kuwait Towers symbolise modern Kuwait and its forward-looking approach  to the rest of the world

Kuwaiti banks look to international markets for growth

April 2, 2013

Kuwait’s banks are looking to external markets as they pursue growth, a strategy that has the potential to strengthen Kuwait’s economic relationships with the countries in which it operates.  

Vote of confidence: Kuwait’s December 2012 election resulted  in a parliament that was largely in favour of the country’s economic development plan

New government incites new-found optimism in Kuwait

April 2, 2013

In the past year, political turbulence has dented Kuwait's otherwise healthy economy, with political infighting effectively blocking the government's $130bn economic development plan (EDP). But a new government, elected in December 2012, looks set to put an end to the country's political problems and kick-start the EDP.

Standing firm: Kuwait’s banking sector saw record growth in 2012

Kuwait's banking industry goes from strength to strength

April 2, 2013

Largely unaffected by the political and economic turbulence outside the country, Kuwait's banks recorded strong growth in 2012, and are looking to improve on this in 2013, by seeking growth abroad and taking advantage of the opportunities offered by the government's $130bn national development plan.

View from Iran

View from Iran: how the country's economy came to crisis

March 1, 2013

An Iranian economist reports from the country, telling how the targeted US and UN sanctions have delivered a huge blow to the country's economy, an economy that was already overly dependent upon oil revenues and reeling from years of mismanagement.

Islamic finance in 2013

Islamic finance in 2013: beyond the growth

March 1, 2013

Year upon year, the Islamic finance industry posts stellar growth figures. However, as large Western lenders withdraw from the sector, is Islamic finance in as healthy a shape as the figures suggest? The Banker asks a number of experts in the field what the future holds for sharia-compliant banking.

Banks to watch in 2013, Bank Nizwa

February 1, 2013

The Banker has identified 13 banks to keep an eye on in the coming year based on a variety of factors. Established in 2013, following a directive authorising Islamic institutions in Oman, Bank Nizwa is the country's first standalone Islamic bank and one to watch in 2013.

Banks to watch in 2013, EFG Hermes

February 1, 2013

The Banker has identified 13 banks to keep an eye on in the coming year based on a variety of factors. Following its 2012 merger with Qatari investment bank QInvest, Egypt-based EFG Hermes will be a bank to watch in 2013.

Social banking in the omnichannel era

Social banking in the omnichannel era

February 1, 2013

Banks are no longer just competing with each other, they are also at war with a growing number of retailers and innovative start-ups that employ social media tactics to offer sought-after services. The Banker brought together a panel of banking experts to discuss the issues. This round table was sponsored by Cisco, but independently written and edited.

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