Hashim Shawa

Chairman of Bank of Palestine Group

Fireside Chat: A Conversation with Hashim Shawa


Fireside Chat: A Conversation with Hashim Shawa

Hashim Shawa is Chairman of Bank of Palestine Group (a value-based banking group), a leader in the business community, Board Chair of Ibtikar Fund, a patron of Palestinian art, and an active philanthropist. The conversation will cover topics from geopolitics to economics and offer a glimpse into Hashim’s life as a Palestinian who returned from the diaspora and was committed to building a better future for Palestine.

This session will be moderated by Besan Abu-Joudeh, CEO and Co-founder of BuildPalestine.

Hashim Shawa's Bio

Hashim Shawa joined Bank of Palestine as Chairman and General Manager (GM) in 2007; and has maintained the bank’s strategic direction of sustained growth and expansion. During his tenure as Chairman and GM he helped in the institutionalization of the bank; bringing forth a value based approach to banking. The bank today has an active financial inclusion program focusing on providing banking services and financial awareness to women, Small Medium Enterprises and Youth. As a result, the bank has expanded its network and operating indicators becoming effectively the largest financial institution in Palestine. Today, with a focus on core banking services and innovative electronic solutions; Bank of Palestine is engaged in retail, corporate, SME & Micro, and Diaspora banking operations. In 2017 and in an effort to enhance the bank’s international expansion and in order to focus on the entire performance of the Bank’s group of companies, Hashim Shawa became Chairman of Bank of Palestine Group and is no longer overseeing the Bank’s operation as GM. Today the Bank of Palestine Groups consists of Arab Islamic Bank, the group’s Islamic Banking arm, PalPay, the Groups Fintech and E payments solutions provider, and Al Wasata, the group’s brokerage and portfolio investments arm. The Bank of Palestine Group role in developing the financial industry in Palestine was recognized by several key Banking Awards and memberships including membership in the Global Alliance for Banking on Values –GABV. After obtaining his BSc (Hons) from University College London, Shawa began his banking career at Citigroup in 1997 where he held various management positions in Corporate and Private Banking working in the UK, Italy, Spain, and Switzerland. In Italy at Citigroup Shawa was in charge of the team responsible for helping in the country’s transition from the Lira to the Euro. In 2005 he joined HSBC in Switzerland as a director of the group’s Middle East and North Africa business. His role was to develop the company’s Private Banking business in the Gulf and establish HSBC’s onshore presence in Kuwait. Shawa is also the Chairman of the boards of directors of Al-Wasata Securities Company; PalPay E-Payment Solutions Company and Ibtikar Innovation Fund. Shawa is a member of the Emerging Markets Advisory Council at the International Institute of Finance Washington DC, Association of Banks in Palestine, and the board of Pharmacare Pharmaceuticals PLC. Shawa is a member of the board of trustees of Bethlehem University; the Palestine Studies Institute and the World Economic Forum in Geneva. He was recognized as one of the 50 most influential leaders in finance and banking according the Global Finance Magazine in 2015; in addition to best CEO in the Middle East by EMEA Finance for the year 2014.

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