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Insurance is key to fostering economic growth and investment in the Middle East and North Africa region

Dubai, UAE; May 30, 2013: Insurance can promote economic development, create jobs and boost trade across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, according to “The Role of Insurance in MENA” – a new report from Zurich Insurance Group (Zurich) launched at the World Economic Forum, MENA summit, held in Jordan from May 24-26.

Though the MENA region has made considerable progress over the last decade, with some of the lowest insurance penetration rates in the world, there is still large growth potential in the insurance sector. However, insurance can help to transform the MENA economies to address many of the economic and social challenges facing the region, including helping nations to diversify and modernize their economies to create sufficient employment opportunities for the young.

•    Insurance allows individuals and their families to protect their hard-earned assets, which provides economic stability for all classes of society.
•    By providing risk transfer possibilities and facilitating capital formation, insurers also promote economic development.
•    Insurance provides essential coverage to businesses that promotes trade and economic activity.
•    Furthermore, by insuring trade and foreign direct investments, insurance contributes to sustainable growth across all market sectors.

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Bank Muscat extends evening banking to 8 more branches

MUSCAT, 29 May 2013 – Further adding convenience and value-added services, Bank Muscat, the flagship financial services provider in the Sultanate, has extended timings to provide evening banking service in eight more branches across the Sultanate from 2 June 2013. With this addition, 16 branches will be offering the extended timings and evening banking service to customers from 8.00 am to 5.00 pm (Sunday to Thursday).

The new branches offering evening banking service are Ruwi, Al Amerat, Falah Al Qabil, Buraimi, Ibri Jubail, Safalat Ibra, Sur Afiah and Firq. The extended timings and evening banking facility are already available at the branches in Muscat Inter-Continental, Muscat City Centre, Al Khuwair, Seeb, Al Khoud, Barka main, Sohar main and Salalah main.

Said Al Badai, DGM – Braches, said: “As the leading bank in Oman, Bank Muscat is proud to offer extended timings in branches across the Sultanate, facilitating value-added services to the largest banking family. As part of the bank’s ‘We Can Do More’ vision and in view of the growing market demand for longer banking hours, the bank decided to offer the new facility at eight more branches covering all regions of the Sultanate, effective 2 June 2013, for the convenience of customers, businessmen and traders. Aimed at accommodating people’s busy schedules, the extended banking hours at all key locations will benefit customers who face difficulties in visiting the bank in morning hours.”

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Bank Sohar Honored for Supporting Yeti Educational Village

In its six years of operation, Bank Sohar has consistently engaged with the local community and through its generous philanthropy in the Sultanate, made meaningful contributions to the education and wellbeing of residents. At a ceremony hosted recently by the Directorate General of Education, Bank Sohar was honored for the second year running for its support of a pioneering educational project committed to eradicating illiteracy in rural communities.
Called the ‘Educational Village’, this groundbreaking initiative was launched more than three years ago in the coastal village of Yeti. Since its opening, scores of local villagers have enrolled for adult literacy, numeracy and other educational programmes that have been progressively transforming their lives socially and economically.
In commemoration of the completion of this landmark project and its ongoing success, the Directorate General of Education in Muscat Governorate held a ceremony at the Al Bustan Palace – A Ritz Carlton Hotel to recognize the contribution of all the key figures associated with this visionary project, as well as the many private sector organizations that have extended their support to this noble venture. Bank Sohar, a sincere supporter of such causes, shared the limelight with a number of prominent corporate’s which were honored on the occasion. Presiding over the ceremony was H.E Engineer Khalfan Saleh Mohammed Al Naabi - Adviser of the Ministry of the Sports Affairs.

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Bank Sohar Announces First 30 Winners of ‘Mystery Sahara’ Credit Card Campaign

  • First monthly draw sees customers win prizes worth over OMR 8,000

 

Muscat, May 28, 2013: Towards acknowledging their credit card customers, Bank Sohar announced the initial 30 winners from the first monthly draw under their ‘Mystery Sahara’ Credit Card Campaign in an action-packed event at the Bank’s Qurum branch.

Launched recently, the new campaign gives 90 lucky Bank Sohar customers the chance to win high value gifts over the next three months. For every  purchase of RO 30 or more using Bank Sohar Credit Cards (Internet, Classic, Gold and Platinum), customers will get a chance to win a ‘Mystery Sahara gift’ in a monthly raffle draw.  The bank gave away a total of 30 gifts to the lucky winners as part of the promotion, which included Smart phones, tablets, smart TVs, laptops and smart cameras.

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Bank Muscat launches CE mentoring programme for SMEs

MUSCAT, 28 May 2013 – Bank Muscat, the flagship financial services provider in the Sultanate, in implementation of the recommendations of the Royal symposium on SMEs, has launched a unique mentoring programme for SMEs under the direct supervision of AbdulRazak Ali Issa, Chief Executive. The CE mentoring programme is an initiative developed by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry to impart the required skills and guidance for SMEs drawn from diverse fields.

AbdulRazak Ali Issa will personally play a major role in mentoring six entrepreneurs selected for the programme, including four women and two men engaged in contracting and trading, gift wrapping, beauty parlour and school. Two of the trainees are from the wilayat of Buraimi.

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Nawras launches enhanced BlackBerry plans to give customers more data and greater value

New BlackBerry plans start at just one Omani Rial

Muscat, 28May 2013 –Nawras BlackBerry customers are now able to benefit from plans that include greater dataallowances as well asunlimited BlackBerry Messenger(BBM) and emails, with no increase in price.Oman’s customer friendly communications provider has boosted every BlackBerry plan to give customersmuch more value. The company has also introduced two new options, one of which is a weekly plan with a data allowanceof 120 MB,for just one Omani Rial.

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HSBC BANK OMAN CELEBRATES EMPLOYEES’ ACCOMPLISHMENTS OVER THE LAST THREE DECADES

Muscat, May 28th 2013 – In appreciation of their long service and contributions to the bank over the last three decades, HSBC Bank Oman S.A.O.G. recently celebrated the achievements of over 70 employees who have completed 10, 20 and 30 years’ service with Oman International Bank and HSBC Bank Middle East Oman. Recognition ceremonies have been taking place across the Sultanate, including Sohar, Salalah and Muscat, with employees supported by colleagues and family members.

Ewan Stirling, CEO, HSBC Bank Oman, was full of praise and admiration for the loyalty shown by these employees.  He said that they had exhibited steadfast commitment and dedication to the bank and wished them continued long service and success.

He added, “In HSBC Bank Oman we are on an incredible journey, focused on our vision to become the leading bank in Oman, leveraging HSBC Group’s global strengths locally to the benefit of our Oman customers and the Oman economy.  Coupling this with so many loyal and committed employees will really help accelerate our ability to achieve this vision.”

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al Mazyona prize draw celebrated at SQU

MUSCAT, 27 May 2013 – The 2013 al Mazyona savings scheme offering a prize basket of RO 7 million from Bank Muscat celebrated the weekly draw and monthly draw for the children’s scheme at SQU branch. Dr. Ahmed Yahya al Maskari, Head of Crop Sciences at the Agricultural and Marine Sciences College, picked the winners at the event attended by SQU students, faculty members and doctors.

al Mazyona weekly draw rewarded 30 customers covering all regions, including three Zeinah customers, with RO 1,000 each. Customers get one chance for the weekly draw for every RO 100 balance.

al Mazyona Children’s account holders maintaining a monthly balance of RO 50 won 20 prizes of RO 100 each in the monthly draw. Children celebrating his or her birthday during the month also won 10 additional prizes of RO 100 each.

As on date, al Mazyona 2013 scheme offers the biggest prize money in Oman and the region. Notably, the enhanced prize money is shared by more winners as customers from all governorates are guaranteed to win prizes ranging from RO 1000 a week, RO 50,000 every quarter to RO 100,000 at the end of the year.

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Bank Muscat wins two awards for key support to sports development

MUSCAT, 26 May 2013 - Bank Muscat, the flagship financial services provider in the Sultanate, has won two awards in recognition of key support to sports development in Oman. Shaikh Khalid bin Mustahail Al Mashani, Chairman of Bank Muscat, won an award in recognition of initiating the unique Green Sports project to green the playing fields of sports clubs across Oman while the bank won an award for various initiatives in support of sports activities. H.E Shaikh Khalid bin Omar al Marhoon, Minister of Civil Service, presented the awards at a ceremony held as part of the Media Week Celebrations. The awards were based on an annual sports survey conducted by the Oman Journalists Association.
Abdullah Al Rahbi, Head – Events & Sponsorship, said: “Bank Muscat is proud to be recognised once again for its commitment to development of sports in Oman. The awards reflect the bank’s commitment to encouraging health, social interaction and integration through the promotion of sports and physical activity, which will contribute to developing Oman as an attractive sporting destination.”
The Green Sports initiative was launched by the bank in 2012 to develop a sporting nation by supporting sports clubs across Oman to green their playing fields. The bank recognises that local clubs wield immense influence on neighbourhood communities, especially youth, hence clubs with modern infrastructure facilities can help raise sporting heroes for the country.

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