Malaysia Wants a Top Ten in World Bank’s Ranking

Malaysia has renewed its ambitious hope to accelerate its climb in the World Bank’s ranking and move up to the top ten by the year 2010, less than two years from now.

With the inception of the Business Licensing Electronic Support System, BLESS, the government anticipated the country to move from its current rank of 20 out of 178 countries last year. In 2007, Malaysia was ranked 24th.

BLESS is an online gateway developed as a one stop solution center that accommodates foreign businessmen and investors with facilities to submit licensing application and permits. The introduction of BLESS will speed up the processing, and improve the country’s licensing rating, which is moderated as poor at the moment. More than 70 agencies responsible for a wide range of licensing and permits will be able to benefit from the new online system.

The World Bank’s ranking consideres a few factors that influence the climate of country’s business atmosphere such as employment condition, credit facilities as well as ease of licensing processes.

Al Rajhi Bank Malaysia

Al Rajhi, a Saudi Arabia based bank, is presently the world’s biggest Islamic banking group. It offers a wide range of financial services which are in accordance to Shariah principles. The financial institution has been in existence for over 50 years.

In its native country, the bank has a huge stream of network with more than 500 branches, 1800 ATM machines and over 13,000 point of service (POS). Its Saudi operation, Al Rajhi is headquartered in Riyadh.

With a paid up capital of over US3 billion, it is one of the largest joint stock companies in Saudi.

It has also been very aggressive in utilizing the latest technology in order to provide the customers with convenience, speed and versatility. The Islamic banking facilities are not only offered to Muslim but also non-Muslim alike who seek to understand the concept and principle of the Shariah financing.

Al Rajhi set up its first overseas operation in Malaysia in late 2006, making it the first bank from Saudi to be awarded full banking license by the Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM).

From just one branch in Jalan Ampang, Kuala Lumpur, it grew by leaps and bounds and today can pride themselves with close to 20 branches nationwide including in Johor Bahru, Penang, Melaka, Kuching and Kota Bharu. The bank plans to operate 50 branches across the country by 2010.

One of the most popular products offer by Al Rajhi Bank is the Charge Card-i, which is a charge card offered as an alternatively to credit card. It allows the consumers to pay for goods online, through the phone or any Visa accepted machines. Apart from it, the bank also offers other products such as saving account, personal financing, fixed term investment, auto financing and a number of customized corporate products.

Click here to visit Al Rajhi Bank Malaysia website.