Jeddah Asharq Al-Awsat- Mr. Abdulhadi Shayif, General Manager of the National Commercial Bank (NCB), called for strategic mergers in the national banking sector with the aim of finding leading banking entities in the kingdom. He considered mergers an effective way to confront foreign banking competition.
He stated that it was of great importance for national banks to extend beyond the limited domestic scale towards Islamic and Arab regions. He considered that most of the foreign banks allowed to operate in the kingdom up to now are relatively small regional banks with limited roles. He added “In the future, giant banks will enter the kingdoms market and be allowed to spread throughout kingdom, open branches in various areas and practice different banking activities and operate with complete freedom as any domestic bank and under the same system and conditions. The competition will increase and importance of magnitude and experience will be realized.”
The NCB General Manager affirmed that the establishment of large entitles in all the sectors must be concerned with raising the level of expertise and improving performance. Employing the best economic and human capabilities will aid in the confrontation of future challenges. He added that at present, Saudi banks do not have a notable banking presence in Arab countries, whereas the kingdom has an effectively read and heard reflective media presence on the national and Arab scale. On this basis, the largest Arab economy, which includes Arab banks, should have a banking presence in various Arab and Islamic countries.