SBP gives green signal to JS Bank for global operations
JS Bank has planned to commence its global operation in the coming months with the establishment of its first branch in Bahrain following green signal by State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) and Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB). According to officials, JS Bank was granted a licence of wholesale banking branch by central banks of Pakistan and Bahrain to set a branch in Kingdom of Bahrain in its one of the major cities.
The branch is likely to commence its operations by the end of 2015 or by the start of 2016 as the management is aggressively working on its first branch in overseas country besides 238 local branches. The proposed branch is expected to contribute in strengthening the relationship with the MENA Region and to engage with existing and potential investors; special focus will be given to regional corporates with commercial Ties in Pakistan, Pakistani expatriates (non-resident), other Pakistani Banks who don't have overseas branch presence, and Government of Pakistan entities.
Bahrain is considered as financial hub in the MENA region as the number of licensed wholesale Pakistani banks has reached eight banks in this country including two of HBL, three of UBL, one of MCB Bank and one of Bank Alfalah and National Bank of Pakistan. Besides there are Branches called as Business Units of Pakistani banks including Askrai Bank, Bank Al-Habib, Habib Bank and Bank Alfalah Manama and Muharraq.
There are nearly 100,000 Pakistanis are working in Bahrain employed in all walks of life in Pakistan including highly skilled professions like security and defence services. This intensive presence of Pakistani banks in Bahrain undoubtedly will reflect positively on the banking business and will enhance the historical trade relations between Bahrain and Pakistan. Earlier this year, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif met Bahrain PM Shaikh Khalifa bin Salman Al-Khalifa for boosting mutual economic relations between the two countries which currently stands at US $ 200 million.
In 2014, the King of Bahrain, King Shaikh Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa accompanied by a highlevel delegation including members of the cabinet, government officials and important businessmen met federal cabinet including PM.
This was the first visit of King of Bahrain in last four decades with immense importance between the relationships of two countries.