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KUWAIT CITY, Dec 5: National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) was named “Best Foreign Exchange Provider in Kuwait and the Middle East for 2023”, for the 11th consecutive time in the annual survey of Global Finance magazine based on the input from industry analysts, corporate executives and technology experts around the world. Criteria for choosing the Foreign Exchange Providers Award winners included transaction volume, market share, scope of global coverage, customer service, competitive pricing and innovative technologies. Global Finance also considered bank submissions, input from industry analysts, corporate executives and technology specialists. Global Finance magazine has named its 23rd annual World’s Best Foreign Exchange Providers in 88 countries including 7 different global regions, as well as the winning providers for FX research and analysis and for FX trading technology.

National Bank of Kuwait NBK was named ‘Best Foreign Exchange Provider in Kuwait and the Middle East for 2023’ in the annual survey of Global Finance magazine.

NBK was listed among the World’s Best Foreign Exchange Providers, and the best bank in the Middle East in terms of providing FX market services along with major international financial institutions such as J.P. Morgan, Bank of America, Citibank, BBVAand Société Générale. Global Finance mentioned that these awards honor banks with FX departments that have provided their clients superior guidance and performance during these changing times, with inflation reaching unprecedented rates since four decades. This has dramatically increased the foreign exchange market’s volatility, making selecting the best FX partner critical more than ever.

Receiving this prestigious award constitutes a new recognition of NBK’s leadership, locally and regionally, as a provider of top-notch innovative banking solutions to its clients. This leadership is the fruit of the bank’s huge investments in developing its infrastructure to offer high-quality services as well as its investments in high-caliber human capital. Commenting on this recognition, Roudhan Al Rodhan, Chief Foreign Exchange Dealer at National Bank of Kuwait, said: “Receiving this award for the 11th year in a row reflects the breadth and quality of the services provided to our clients. It addition, it is a testimonial to the hard work, flexibility and dedication of NBK Treasury team.” Al Rodhan noted that the award demonstrates NBK’s long-term commitment to cement its leadership and strengths in foreign exchange markets by providing competitive rates and high-quality service to clients, as well as continuing to provide liquidity even duringmarket volatility.

“NBK garners the fruits of long years of investment in technology and people. The foreign exchange market industry is highly competitive, therefore, the bank is determined to continue investing heavily in technologies and upgrading foreign exchange electronic dealing platforms to meet all the needs of its clients,” he added. Global Finance, founded in 1987 and headquartered in New York, is one of the most reputable magazines specialized in finance and economics.

It has a circulation of 50,000 readers in 193 countries around the world, including senior corporate and financial officers responsible for making investment and strategic decisions at multinational companies and financial institutions. The magazine conducts various surveys annually about innovation and profitability for banks and financial institutions all over the world, based on which it selects top performers on the regional and international levels.

The National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) was founded in 1952. It is the largest financial institution in Kuwait. With branches and subsidiaries in China, Geneva, London, Paris, New York and Singapore. And a regional presence across the Middle East in Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Turkey, and the UAE. The group reported a net profit after non-controlling interests of KD 370.7 million compared to KD 322.4 million for 2017, an increase of 15%. Operating profit amounted to KD 606.9 million as compared to KD 557.2 million in 2017, an increase of 8.9%.

Net interest income and net income from Islamic financing at KD 690.5 million reflects a 9.8% increase on 2017 (KD 629 million). Net fees and commissions at KD 150.2 million reflects an 8.4% increase on 2017 (KD 138.6 million). Net gains from dealing in foreign currencies amounted to KD 39 million in 2018 as compared to KD 33.7 million in 2017. Operating expenses amounted to KD 276.3 million, as compared to KD 265.4 million in 2017. The cost to income ratio for 2018 improved to 31.3% as compared to 32.3% in 2017. Provision charge for credit losses and impairment losses amounted to KD 179.7 million, as compared to KD 188.2 million in 2017. The return on average equity at 12% in 2018 compared to 10.8% in 2017.

The idea of a National Bank of Kuwait started in 1952; a meeting was held with the Amir of Kuwait, Abdullah Al Salem Al Sabah, who issued a decree on 19 May 1952 to establish the National Bank of Kuwait, and NBK started operating through a small branch on 15 November 1952. NBK grew to be one of the largest banks in the region.