Musbah Akkari, the new chairman of the state National Commercial Bank (NCB), one of the largest banks in Libya, has apologised to customers and promised to improve his bank’s services. ‘‘We apologize to all our valued customers for any shortcomings and pledge to do more to improve services and improve banking services for the better.’’, he said.
Akkari was formerly chairman of the largest Libyan bank, the state-owned Jumhuria bank. He is also a member of the influential Central Bank of Libya Libyan Dinar Exchange Rate Committee.
The NCB charman was announcing a raft of new services and products in reaction to customer demand and criticism. The NCB had been a typical state-owned bank with very poor customer service and little new products. Like all state banks it is overcrowded and acts more as a safe for the state to distribute its salaries through. Akkari is trying to change this.
Raising cash withdrawal ceilings
To this end, the NCB announced that it has raised the ceiling for withdrawals from automatic withdrawal machines to 700 dinars per day, 1400 dinars per week and 4,000 thousand dinars per month. It is also raising the ceiling of purchases through points of sale to a monthly ceiling of 8,000 dinars. Through its Yasser Pay service the ceiling rises from 2,000 dinars to more than 100,00 dinars, according to the type of commodity, as well as a cash withdrawal ceiling of 2,000 dinars, which can be raised in emergency cases.
Opening new branches and renovating old ones
During 2022, Akkari revealed that the NCB will open branches and agencies and rehabilitate new branches and carry out maintenance of branches affected by the wars that the country has experience. These are:
1- Dar es Salaam branch – opened at the beginning of the year
2- Al-Abraq Agency opened
3- Marawa Agency opened
4- Al-Marj branch opened
5- Jallo branch opened
6- Al-Jihad branch was moved to the new building and was opened
7- Ajdabiya branch opened after complete maintenance
8- Al-Madar Agency, Tripoli, opened
9 Solidarity Corner Agency opened
10 Municipality square branch opened
11- Commercial Complex Agency has been opened
12 – Surman Agency – to be opened in October
13- Sabrata branch – opening in October
14 Al-Ajelat branch – opening in November
15- Al-Hawari Branch: Transfer to the building after maintenance, within the next 12 months
16- Opening of Al-Abyar branch in October
17- Benina Agency – opening in October
Launch of Islamic products
Akkari also announced that after a halt of four years, the NCB will relaunch Islamic financing services products for individuals on 18 September.
He pointed out that the NCB is ranked third in terms of obtaining foreign exchange, according to Central Bank of Libya statistics for August this year.
The new computer system
The NCB chairman also announced the completion of the roll out to the rest of the bank’s branches on the entirely new computer system by the end of October. The bank had partially shut down its system for a month in summer to upgrade. It came in for much criticism for the move. Akkari said it was a necessary step.
300 ATM machines
He also revealed the installation of 300 ATM machines by the end of this year, up from the current 120 machines.
The bank is working on improvements
Akkari said these new planned improvements will mean that the NCB has a strong financial position and that there is an administration that is working and trying to upgrade banking services to the best picture.
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