Iran, Bahrain link ATM networks
Automated Teller Machine (ATM) networks of Bahrain and Iran are to be linked, enabling customers to have direct access to their accounts from the two states.
An agreement to establish ATM links between the two sides was signed Monday, 17th May 2004, between the Bahrain Monetary Agency (BMA) and Bank Markazi Jomhouri Islami Iran.
The agreement was signed on behalf of the BMA by Shaikh Salman bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, Director, Banking Services, and Mr. Mehran Sharifi, Director, Payment Systems Department, Bank Markazi Iran.
Under the terms of the agreement, the BMA and Bank Markazi Iran will link their national ATM switches, namely the Benefit system and Iran’s Shetab.
“We are delighted to sign this agreement, which will have a significant impact on enhancing the strong business and tourism ties between our countries,” said Mr. Waleed Rashdan, Executive Director, Banking Operations, at the BMA.
Bahrain is the first country to establish ATM links with Iran. The move will enable Bahrain residents to use their ATM cards in Iran for effecting cash withdrawals and to check their account balances. Iranian citizens will, similarly, be able to use their bank cards in Bahrain.
“The linkage with Bahrain will also facilitate the establishment of ATM linkages between Iran and other GCC countries, through Bahrain,” said Mr. Rashdan.
Bahrain is part of the GCCNet system, which links ATMs across the six GCC states of Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Qatar, Kuwait and Oman, he pointed out.
With the signing of the BMA-Bank Markazi Iran agreement, ATM operators of the two countries, namely The Benefit Company in Bahrain and Iran’s Informatics Services Corporation (ISC), will soon begin work on implementing the linkage.
“We hope the two companies will soon be able to put in place the required technical mechanisms to make the ATM linkage a reality in the very near future,” said Mr. Rashdan. (menareport.com)
© 2004 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)