MUSCAT, 14 October 2014 – Bank Muscat, the flagship financial services provider in the Sultanate, as part of its commitment to encouraging entrepreneurial initiatives, launched a new service benefiting micro and small businesses. H.E. Eng. Ahmed bin Hassan Al Dheeb, Under-Secretary at the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, presided as the guest of honour at the launch ceremony of Najahi, in the presence of AbdulRazak Ali Issa, Chief Executive, and senior bank officials at the head office.
H.E. Eng. Ahmed bin Hassan Al Dheeb commended the bank for the new initiative offering a major boost for start-up and small businesses in Oman. H.E. Eng. Al Dheeb said: “The government is making serious efforts in encouraging Omani youth to embark on entrepreneurial pursuits and the initiative by the bank to support this segment will help in making vital contributions to the economy. The innovative product line-up introduced by the bank is a boost for enterprising small businesses in Oman."
AbdulRazak Ali Issa said: “In step with the directives of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said to strengthen the role of entrepreneurial ventures in the economic development of Oman, Bank Muscat is proud to launch Najahi in support of micro and small businesses in Oman. Over the past years, Bank Muscat has accomplished major achievements providing the required support for entrepreneurs, especially youth, who constitute the future of Oman. The bank's commitment stems from the strong belief that entrepreneurial ventures help boost the local economy, contribute to the GDP and create self-employment opportunities for youth."
In the Oman market, there are thousands of business customers who do not have access to formal credit facility. These customers are classified as micro and small business enterprises. Najahi reaches out to this segment of customers.
Sadiq Mohammed Baqer Al Lawati, Head of Retail Enterprise Unit, in the welcome address noted that the specially designed suite of Najahi products included unsecured credit facilities for the small business segment to develop their business. With Najahi, Bank Muscat fulfills the primary need of the small business segment, he added.
The target customers for Najahi credit facilities consist of micro and small businesses in Oman, which have commercial registration and are in operation for two years. Najahi credit is offered only on behalf of legal businesses. The product line-up includes flexi loan to support working capital, business expansion and other business needs; contractors loan to complete contracted jobs; contractors bill of discounting against bills submitted for completed contracted jobs; specially designed current account facility with dedicated relationship managers and insurance cover for business premises.
The new service will significantly contribute to supporting small businesses by offering them the necessary facilities to take their first step confidently in the journey of success as well as encouraging the youth to join the world of entrepreneurship.
Over the past years, Bank Muscat has launched a series of initiatives to strengthen the SME sector in Oman. Serving as building blocks for entrepreneurs, these initiatives assume importance in the backdrop of the priority accorded by the government to develop the SME sector in Oman.