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Bank Sohar Reinforces Their Commitment to Road Safety with Donation to ORSA

Muscat, June 25, 2013: As part of Bank Sohar’s ongoing ‘Be Safe... Be Responsible’ road safety campaign and in line with its focus on Corporate Social Responsibility - Bank Sohar continued to support the Oman Road Safety Association (ORSA). The donation will support the activities which will be organized by the ORSA, with the aim to raise children’s and their families’ awareness when using roads as pedestrians, cyclists, or even as passengers in vehicles.

The cheque was handed to Mrs. Shaima Al Lawati, CEO of Oman Road Safety Association, by Mr. Mazin Al Raisi, the AGM and Head of Marketing and Publicity of Bank Sohar, at the bank’s premises in MBD.

Commenting on the need to contribute to road safety issues in the country, Mr. Mazin Al Raisi said, “The number of people being killed and injured in road traffic crashes in Oman continues to be a big concern and disturbingly, a significant number of these victims are pedestrians. Road safety measures are not only restricted to vehicle drivers, it is just as important for passengers and indeed pedestrians to be aware of safety tips. Road safety awareness needs to be spread through the community and we hope this donation and our joint efforts with the ORSA will help drive this message home.”


Bank Muscat recognized by Hawkamah for benchmark corporate governance

MUSCAT, 25 June 2013 – For the third year running, Bank Muscat, the flagship financial institution in the Sultanate, has won a Hawkamah award in recognition of benchmark corporate governance practices. Ahmed Al Barami, AGM – Chairman’s Office, received the award at a ceremony in Dubai attended by senior bankers from the region.

Hawkamah is a regional initiative aimed at recognizing and encouraging superior governance practices in the banking sector in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. The award jury commended Bank Muscat for adopting a unique approach to the areas of corporate governance and corporate social responsibility. The jury evaluated the various award criteria and interviewed a panel from the bank to decide the winner.

AbdulRazak Ali Issa, Chief Executive, said: “Winning the Hawkamah award for the third year running is a unique achievement for Bank Muscat. The prestigious recognition for superior governance leadership serves as a model for banks in the region. Bank Muscat has absolute belief in and understanding of the key principles of corporate governance which is reflected in the way we do business. As the leading bank in the Sultanate, it is important that we set the standards and we have done this by creating a culture of openness, transparency and accountability, which are important for any organisation. The bank has an advantage in creating this culture which has helped the institution to progress steadily.”


Bank Sohar to Hold Second Draw Of Mystery Sahara Campaign

•    June raffle to announce 30 more winners of Bank Sohar’s Excel Credit Cards campaign

Muscat, June 24, 2013: Following the success of the first month of the Bank’s exclusive credit card promotion, Bank Sohar is pleased to announce the second draw under the ‘Mystery Sahara Campaign’, which will be conducted on July 06, 2013 at the Muscat City Center – Al Seeb. The Bank Sohar prize draw will declare the second group of thirty winners of the ‘Mystery Sahara’ Credit Card Campaign.

Mr. R. Narasimhan, DGM & Head of Retail Banking at Bank Sohar commented, “With the holiday season approaching, Bank Sohar is making shopping and spending all the more fun for customers. With every purchase of RO 30 or more with any of Bank Sohar’s Excel Credit Cards, customers are automatically entered into the ‘Mystery Sahara’ draw where they have the opportunity to win a special surprise gift from Bank Sohar.”

Offering more value to its customers on its wide range of credit cards, Bank Sohar launched the exciting ‘Mystery Sahara’ campaign whereby 90 lucky customers get the chance to win high value gifts during the three month promotion period. For every  purchase of RO 30 or more using a Bank Sohar Excel Credit Cards (Internet, Classic, Gold and Platinum), customers are entered into a draw to win a ‘Mystery Sahara gift’ in a monthly prize draw.  The bank will give away a total of 90 gifts to the lucky winners as part of the promotion, which started from April 15 till July 15, 2013.


Bank Muscat to select new batch for ‘Jesr al Mustaqbal’ scholarships

MUSCAT, 24 June 2013 - Bank Muscat, the flagship financial services provider in the Sultanate, has invited applications to select a new batch of Omani youth for ‘Jesr al Mustaqbal’ (Bridge to Future) higher education scholarship programme.

Secondary school graduates from low-income families are eligible to apply for the scholarship to pursue undergraduate diplomas at selected colleges and universities. The study programmes offered are diploma in Banking, Accounting, Finance or Information Technology, with its duration not exceeding three and a half years. Students who achieved GPA of 3.50 and above in their diploma studies may, at the discretion of the bank’s Management, be offered sponsorship to pursue a bachelor’s degree programme. The sponsorship covers course registration, tuition fees, books and monthly allowance of RO 75.

‘Jesr al Mustaqbal’ was launched by the bank in 2012 in execution of the directive of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos to provide relevant educational and training opportunities for Omani youth to develop employable skills. The comprehensive Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiative offers educational and vocational training sponsorship for young Omanis - both male and female from low-income and limited income families who have not been able to complete their education for various reasons.

Beneficiaries must be unemployed Omani nationals below 20 years and they must have completed Secondary school with at least 70 per cent marks, with the course completed not more than two years prior to the proposed date of enrolment to college. Candidates applying for sponsorship will be required to clear the placement test conducted by respective colleges. Priority will be given to students with no employment in the family.


Bank Sohar Wins ‘Fastest Growing Bank In Oman’ Award for Second Year Running

Muscat | June 23, 2013: Cementing its position as one of Oman’s most dynamic banking institutions, Bank Sohar is pleased to announce its latest win – the award of ‘Fastest Growing Bank In Oman’ at the Banker Middle East Product Awards 2013 organised by CPI Financial.

Demonstrating excellence and the fastest rate of growth amongst its competition in the banking sector in the Sultanate, Bank Sohar scooped the prestigious ‘Fastest Growing Bank in Oman’ for the second year running, establishing the Bank’s increasing presence in Oman.

The prestigious accolade was conferred on Bank Sohar at a ceremony held in Dubai on 19th June 2013 at the Emirates Towers Hotel. Dr. Mohamed Abdulaziz Kalmoor, CEO of Bank Sohar accepted the award on behalf of the Bank, while Mr. Abdulali Abdullah Al Lawati, Senior AGM – Corporate Support, and Mr. Mazin Mahmood Al Raisi, AGM & Head Marketing and Publicity, were also present at the ceremony representing the Bank. CEOs and top-flight bankers representing leading institutions from across the Middle East and Africa region also attended the gala event.


Bank Muscat wins Standard Chartered Bank award for fund transfer

MUSCAT, 23 June 2013 - Bank Muscat, the flagship financial services provider in the Sultanate, has won an award from Standard Chartered Bank for outstanding performance in fund transfer related to dollar payments. The bank received the straight through processing (STP) Excellence Award for completing 98.5 % STP rate on USD payments for the year 2012.

Ali Amin Moosa, AGM – Central Operations, said: “Winning this award is testimony to the bank’s commitment to high standards of quality in meeting the stringent criteria for fund transfer. The award acknowledges the bank’s exceptional quality in the delivery of commercial payments and transfers, facilitated by a state-of-the-art in-house payment architecture which helps the bank to consistently maintain high SWIFT standards for automated processing throughout the payment chain resulting in extremely high STP rates.”

The bank’s Central Operations electronic payments department, Treasury back office and Global Trade Services department are handling fund transfer operations while the technical and security issues are handled by the Systems & Procedures department. The Financial Institutions Group, acknowledged as one of the leading FI teams in the region, has established more than 500 correspondent banking relationships across the world.”


Bank Muscat to host SME workshop on marketing opportunities

MUSCAT, 22 June 2013 - Bank Muscat SME department in collaboration with International Finance Corporation (IFC) is hosting a workshop on ‘Assessing Marketing Opportunities’ on 27 June at the bank’s head office. Aimed at benefiting existing and prospective entrepreneurs, the workshop to be conducted by expert trainers assumes importance in the backdrop of the priority accorded by the government to develop the SME sector.


Collective Wedding Ceremony in Al-Khaboura Celebrated with Bank Sohar

Muscat, June 21, 2013: Recently 49 young Omani couples celebrated their wedding in one of the largest-scale ceremonies to be held in Wilayat Al-Khaboura. The ceremony was organized by the local community and supported by Bank Sohar as part of the Bank’s constant contribution to the development and stability of the community.

The event was attended by many relatives and guests from Wilayat Al-Khaboura and the neighbouring areas. Representing Bank Sohar at the event were Mr. Salim Khamis Al Maskari, Senior AGM- Branches, Mr. Abdul Jalil Al Ajmi, Al Khaboura Branch Manager & Mr. Abdullah Al Mahmoodi, Chief Manager – Events & Promotion.

On this happy occasion, Mr. Salim Khamis Al Maskari, Senior AGM- Branches at Bank Sohar, noted: “The collective wedding ceremony was organised to enable young couples to start a family without having to individually incur the high costs of the venue, decorations, food and beverages. By lending support to the collective wedding initiative, we aim to help the community by performing this much required social service. The Bank’s support also helps organisers meet the demanding expenses of such events.”

“Bank Sohar’s support of the event is in line with the corporate social responsibility and with the Bank’s commitment to sustain the security and stability of the local community. “By supporting this collective wedding, as well as others, we want to help young Omanis establish stable and debt-free families,” said Al-Maskari.


Indian investments Significant in Middle East and other countries

A top official from HSBC bank stated this week at the HSBC Regional Exchange Conference that trade amongst the Middle East and South African Countries would be doubled within the next decade. Mainly with the development of trade in non oil sector, the potentiality of overall growth in the marketing sectors is highly on the card, the executive stressed. This week Muscat Grand Mall sources revealed their plan for adding 100 new retail outlets bringing the total outlets in the mall to 250. The new construction would also include new parking facilities and cinema complex. The project is worth over RO 50 million and the money will be derived via investments, the sources said.

This week the Russian Ambassador to the UAE, Alexander Efimov met the Assistant Foreign Minister For International Organisations Affairs of UAE, Dr. Saeed Mohammed Al Shamsi and discussed bilateral issues. While hailing the past vibrant relations between the two countries in every sector, both agreed in keeping the cordial friendship uninterrupted in the future as well. Meanwhile, Knight Frank India with IP Global organized an international event in UAE where the officials highlight the investment opportunities available for Indians in foreign countries. Australia, The US, the UK, Hong Kong and Malaysia are countries that Indians have invested in very much. Real Estate Market is one of the places their investment is significant. Like wise, with the growing population in India, the opportunities of more profit through investment in Indian housing projects is also on the card, the sources highlighted.


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