Membership Rises to 66 Institutions

With the Board approval and the General Assembly’s confirmation of the membership applications of Bhutan National Bank Limited (BNBL) and the SME Bank of Sri Lanka, ADFIAP’s total membership has increased to 66 members in 32 countries.

The two new members were formally welcomed during the 29th ADFIAP Annual Meetings on May 8-10, 2006 at the Grand Cinnamon Hotel in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

BNBL is a financial institution engaged in all commercial banking activities, such as accepting deposits, extending credit facilities to its customers. It is licensed under the Financial Institutions Act of Bhutan in 2002. It was converted from a unit trust company to a commercial bank in 1997.

The Bank aims to collaborate with the Association in the area of staff and professional development. The key officers of the bank are Mr. Kipcho Tshering, Managing Director and Mr. Tshewang Samdrup, General Manager.

The SME Bank of Sri Lanka, on the other hand, was established in December 2004 and commenced its operations in July 2005 as a state-owned development bank focused on supporting the small and medium enterprise sector of Sri Lanka. It has been licensed as a specialized bank authorized to do most banking activities including equity investments, but not to operate demand deposits and checking accounts.

The Bank intends to cooperate with ADFIAP in human resource development, information exchange on aspects of development finance, and in facilitating networks with other institutions in Asia-Pacific on enterprise development and support.

Mr. Moksevi R. Prelis, Chairman and Mr. Uditha Palihakkara, Chief Executive Officer, are the key senior persons at SME Bank.