Lebanon 2017 | FINANCE | COLUMN

TBY talks to Bana Akkad Azhari, Managing Director, BNY Mellon, on the sector.

Bana Akkad Azhari

How important is Lebanon to BNY Mellon's overall operations?

We established our first office in the region in Beirut in 1963 and now have offices in four countries; the UAE, Egypt, Lebanon, and Turkey. Lebanon was destined to be a financial center in the mid-20th century because it had one of the most open and liberal economies in the region. The importance of Lebanon for us is that this is a country with a solid financial sector and has a significant client base. Our approach here is highly collaborative with the local banking market to ensure the delivery of the latest solutions to help the economy and end consumer.

What is your portfolio of services in Lebanon, and which areas show the most demand?

In Lebanon, we are focused on investment services. We are recognized as one of the leaders in transaction banking for financial institutions. In addition to this, we facilitate access and connectivity between local and international capital markets when an international listing is made, be it a debt instrument or equity instrument through derivative products. We act as a depositary bank for three out of the four programs for Lebanese companies listed abroad.