The Bahrain-based Arab Banking Corporation has reported a declared a net profit of $127 million for the year ended December 31, 2000, 13 percent more than the $112 million worth of net profit declared in 1999.
As a result of the increased profits, the board of directors of ABC, the Arab Banking Group’s parent company, recommended a dividend payment to shareholders of 7 percent—equal to $.70 per share—which is 17 percent more than 1999 dividend of 6 percent or $0.60 per share.
The total assets of the ABC Group increased by 10 percent to $26.7 billion, and group’s strong capital base was underscored by its high-risk asset ratio of 13.5 percent on December 31, 2000. This compared to 14.7 percent in 1999. The liquid assets to deposits ratio stood at 51 percent, up from 49 percent in 1999. The loans to deposits ratio was 65 percent, the same level that existed a year earlier.
The operating expenses of the group equaled $451 million, 5 percent more than the $429 million reported in 1999. Loan loss provisions for the year totaled $66 million, down from $97 million in 1999.
The year 2000 was marked by the launch of Arab Banking Corporation–Tunisie, SA, which commenced operations in June, providing a full range of domestic banking services to selected corporate and customer clients.
Commenting on the results, Ghazi M. Jawad, ABC’s president and CEO, said that the year 2000 saw continued improvement in ABC’s profitability, better credit quality and stronger liquidity. “We have developed a stronger and broader platform for earnings growth, opened new opportunities in Arab world domestic markets and enhanced our product platforms, which we will strengthen further in 2001,” he said. – (Albawaba-MEBG)
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )