National Bank of Kenya has launched an Islamic banking window as it seeks to expand its business portfolio into the retail and corporate segments.
The window, called ‘National Amanah’, is targeted at retail, SME and corporate clients offering banking products and services in compliance with Islamic shariah. Though based on Shariah compliance the products and services are available to Muslim as well as non-Muslim clients without restrictions.
National Amanah was launched at a dinner hosted by the bank at the Stanley Hotel Nairobi on Monday 29th April 2013. The Governor, Central Bank of Kenya, Prof. Njuguna Ndungu was the chief Guest.
NBK Managing Director, Munir Ahmed said the launch of ‘National Amanah’ was in line with the bank’s continued focus on re-aligning its business in an increasingly competitive environment.
“The launch of National Amanah is part of our strategy to provide our clients with greater choice and reaching out to more of the unbanked Kenyans,” said the MD.
Essentially, Islamic Banking refers to a system of banking that is consistent with Islamic Shariah law and guided by Islamic economics. The fundamental tenet of Islamic banking is that it prohibits the levying of interest on money. Islamic banking has grown into a specialized banking product both locally and globally.
NBK launched Islamic Banking services in 2009 under the name “Al Mumin” following approval by CBK to
offer two deposit-taking products. In February this year, CBK granted approval for the bank to rebrand the Al-mumin to National Amanah and offer more banking services and products in compliance with Islamic Shariah.
The Amanah customers will enjoy benefits of all the banking services offered by the bank including access to mobile banking, internet banking services, 24-hour access to Auto Cash and Pesa Point ATMs countrywide as well as free initial Visa debit cards.