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26/01/2012 | LOC
18:27 GMT
| Kuwait News
تصغير الخطالشكل الأساسيتكبير الخط
KUWAIT, Jan 26 (KUNA) -- National Bank of Kuwait (NBK), the largest Kuwaiti bank and the highest-rated in the Middle East, on Thursday reported net profits of USD 1.086 billion (KD 302.4 million) in 2011 compared with USD 1.
083 bmillion (KD 301.7 million) in 2010.
NBK Group's total assets stood at USD 48.9 billion (KD 13.6 billion), up 5.
6% compared to 2010, while total shareholders' equity rose by 4.5% Y-o-Y to USD 7.8 billion (KD 2.2 billion). NBK Group's net operating income grew by 8.
4% Y-o-Y reaching USD 1,939 million (KD 540 million).
Despite the ongoing turmoil in regional markets and the stagnant operating environment in Kuwait, NBK continued to maintain exceptionally strong asset quality indicators with NPLs/Gross loans ratio dropping to 1.55% as of year-end 2011 compared to 1.65% in 2010 and coverage ratio mounting to 243% in 2011 up from 209% in 2010.
Ibrahim Dabdoub, NBK's Group Chief Executive Officer, commented on the Group's solid and robust performance saying, "2011 was another challenging year that confirmed NBK's ability to deliver strong results in turbulent times. NBK's strong performance despite the weakening operating environment, the ongoing pressures on the global economy as well as the political unrest in the Middle East is testimony to the success of the bank's conservative strategy and focus on its core banking operations." "NBK's regional plans remain generally intact. We have tightened our levels of control and risk management in light of the ongoing operating challenges in the Arab world. While we remain optimistic about our regional presence in the long run, we continue to focus on leveraging our strong franchise in the GCC and reap the benefits of expanding into Islamic banking as Boubyan Bank's (47% owned) performance continues improving. " Dabdoub added. NBK owns 47% of Kuwait-based Boubyan Bank, which operates according to Islamic sharia.
Dabdoub also highlighted that NBK's fundamental strengths, along with its clear strategic vision, robust risk management practices and sustainable financial performance helped the bank maintain its strong position through different crises and continued to earn it international recognition. In 2011, NBK maintained its top ranking among Middle Eastern banks and was named the "Best Bank in the Middle East" by Euromoney, The Banker and Global Finance magazines. Additionally, NBK maintained its position among Global Finance's list of the 50 safest banks in the world for the fourth consecutive time.
NBK's Board of Directors has recommended the distribution of a cash dividend equivalent to 40% of the nominal value of the share (40 fils per share). The Board also recommended a bonus share distribution of 10% (10 shares for every 100 shares) to shareholders on record at the time of the General Assembly meeting.
Founded in 1952, NBK is the largest financial institution in Kuwait with effective market dominance in the commercial banking market and has been consistently awarded the highest credit rating of all banks in the region from Moody's, Standard and Poor's, and Fitch Ratings. NBK also stands out in terms of its local and international network, which includes branches, subsidiaries and representative offices in China, Geneva, London, Paris, New York, and Singapore alongside its regional presence in Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Bahrain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and the UAE. (end) hb KUNA 261527 Jan 12NNNN
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KUNA publishes a book titled (His Highness Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah: A Humanitarian Leader) to commemorate the UN honoring of Kuwait's leader

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