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Bank of Palestine (BOP) holds its General Assembly Meeting and Distributes USD 26.05 Million as Dividend for the Year 2012 (19.44% of the Nominal Value of the Share)

April 30, 2013

RAMALLAH, Palestine, April 30, 2013 /PRNewswire/ –

Bank of Palestine (BOP) held its 47th ordinary annual General Assembly Meeting (AGM)
on Friday, April 26, 2013 at the bank’s headquarters in Ramallah and in Gaza via video
conference.

(Photo:
http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130430/612840 )

The General Assembly approved the board of directors’ report, the financial statements
for the year 2012, the external auditor’s report, and the board of directors’
remuneration. The General assembly endorsed the recommendation of BOP’s board of directors
to distribute USD 26,050,000 from realized profits to shareholders as follows (in
proportion to each shareholder’s ownership in paid capital as of April 25, 2013):

        - USD 16 million as stock dividend raising the bank's paid-up capital to USD
          150 million
        - USD 10,050,000 as cash dividend

The General Assembly also appointed Ernst & Young as the external auditor for the
financial year 2013 and authorized the bank’s board of directors’ to appropriate the
auditor’s remuneration.

In his speech, Chairman and General Manager, Hashim Shawa stated: “2012 was not a very
easy year due to the political unrest that Palestine witnessed last year, however, Bank of
Palestine, proved to be resilient. In 2012, BOP’s profits before tax reached USD
49,966,888 an increase of 19.34% compared with 2011. The bank’s net profit reached USD
38,347,397 – for the year 2012; an increase of 12.85% compared with 2011. As at the end of
2012, Bank of Palestine’s total assets reached USD 2,004,494,095 – maintaining the top
rank as the largest Palestinian company in terms of financial assets, total shareholders’
equity reached USD 220,973,909, an increase of 13.67% compared with 2011, and paid-up
capital also increased by 11.67% to reach USD 134,000,000. During this period, the bank’s
market share has also significantly increased to reach 23.75% and 20.79% in loans and
deposits respectively, compared with 20.5% and 18.6% in 2011; deposits reached USD 1.55
billion, an increase of 19.89% compared with 2011 and the loans portfolio reached USD 976
million compared with USD 720 million at the end of 2011; an increase of 35.58%. NPLs at
BOP decreased to reach only 1.61% in 2012.”

Shawa also mentioned several developments that took place in 2012, including; opening
two new branches for the bank – Al-Masyoun branch in Ramallah, and a sub-branch in the
industrial area in Betounya, maintaining its position as the leading bank in Palestine in
terms of number of branches; completing the final stage of the risk management project,
enhancing the bank’s risk management frameworks. The bank introduced several new products
during the year; a mortgage product, a children’s savings campaign, a prepaid Visa card,
and a small business loan for fishermen. In addition to launching the services of its
subsidiary company PalPay(R), an electronic payment solutions gateway. BOP also pursued
new sources of income by signing agreements with several Palestinian banks to issue credit
cards for their clients. Moreover, as part of its holistic sustainability strategy, Bank
of Palestine continued to contribute 5% of its annual net profit to corporate social
responsibility (CSR).

Shawa ended by extending his gratitude to the shareholders for their continued
confidence in the bank’s work, to the clients for their loyalty, to the employees for
their award winning performance, and to the Palestinian Monetary Authority (PMA) for its
ongoing support and its efforts to improve the regulatory framework under which BOP
operates and which contributes to the development of the Palestinian economy.

About Bank of Palestine (BoP)

Bank of Palestine has a long embedded presence and experience in Palestine dating back
to 1960. The bank is now the largest Palestinian bank with the most widespread branch
network in Palestine, a paid up capital of $150 million, and assets of over $2 billion,
with 1,100 employees serving around 600,000 customers. Operating as a universal bank, BoP
is engaged in retail, corporate, micro and SME, and Diaspora banking operations, with the
largest card processing operations in Palestine; BoP is the sole agent for issuing and
acquiring Visa and MasterCard in Palestine with over 5,000 Point of Sale merchant
terminals nationwide. Recently, BoP has also been playing a leading role in some of the
largest project finance loan syndications in Palestine. Bank of Palestine adopts a
holistic sustainability strategy and has been the leader in Corporate Social
Responsibility (CSR) in Palestine dedicating 5% of its net profit to community
development.

Bank of Palestine’s stock (PEX: BOP) has been listed on the Palestine Exchange (PEX)
since 2005. It is among the market’s blue chip stocks, and represents more than 14% of
total PEX market capitalization.

        For more information, please contact:
        Raya Sbitany -- Head of Investor Relations
        Raya.sbitany@bankofpalestine.com
        Mobile: +972-595-746555

http://www.bop-ir.com


    Photo: 

http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130430/612840

SOURCE Bank of Palestine


Source: PR Newswire