In addition to providing a unique and truly digital banking experience to the customers, the newly established Community Bank seeks to reach the unbanked population and encourage entrepreneurship through improving access to credit for small and medium enterprises, the bank’s MD and CEO Masihul Huq Chowdhury has said.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the commercial operation of Community Bank Bangladesh Limited on 11 September.The vision of the bank, which belongs to ownership of Bangladesh Police Welfare Trust, is to reach out to the members of different communities with innovative banking services, said Masihul Huq Chowdhury.
In an exclusive interview with the Daily Sun, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Community Bank Bangladesh Ltd Masihul Huq Chowdhury shared insights on the bank’s vision and priorities to excel in innovation and customer service.
“We seek to be recognised as the most trusted financial services provider in the country. Our goal is to encourage entrepreneurship by providing credit to small and medium enterprises who are pivotal to the country’s economic growth,” he said.
He said the Community Bank will give equal priority to both urban and rural areas in terms of setting up of its branches and technology-enabled service delivery.
Bangladesh Police forces are working hard in urban and remote areas to ensure public security and maintain the law and order. The Community Bank will also offer safe and secure money transaction facilities through mobile apps, said Masihul Huq.
“Community Bank was established by the Bangladesh Police Welfare Trust to create a positive public impact as well as deliver a competitive stakeholder return,” he added.He said the banking sector in Bangladesh is full of diversified perspectives and backgrounds, and the Community Bank shares a common goal to help the customers thrive.
The Board of Directors and the Management Committee believe in facilitating a helping hand to the communities and serve with pride and passion, he added.
Masihul Huq started his career with American Express Bank in 1992 just after obtaining Masters of Business Administration from The Institute of Business Administration, Dhaka University. During his 26 years’ career, he worked at Standard Chartered, Citi, IPDC and other leading financial institutions both in-country and overseas. An Omega Certified Credit Professional, Masihul has in-depth work experience in Wholesale Banking, Retail Banking, Structured & Syndication Financing, Credit, Trade, SME, Operations and Process Re-engineering. Masihul takes a keen interest in education and was an adjunct faculty member at BRAC University. He is a regular contributor to various English dailies.
He said the higher-graduate youths should choose banking job as a profession because this sector offers the deserving people the room to grow, shine and thrive with hard work, honesty and dedication.
He also suggested the youths to utilise their time properly, stay away from any kind of addiction, stay confident and gather technology-based practical skills.
“Our bank will support the educated youths to become entrepreneurs so that as they can provide jobs to others instead of seeking jobs for themselves,” he said.
The bank will focus on setting up a good a number of digital banking booths in rural areas to provide banking services to clients, an official of the bank said.
The booths will help the bank reduce cost and provide micro-lending and deposit products to underprivileged people, he added.
The bank got its approval from the central bank in November last year to roll out the operations with a paid-up capital of Tk 400 crore.
With Community Bank Bangladesh Ltd, the number of the country’s total scheduled banks reaches 59.
“We have a clear vision but execution will be the main challenges for the bank. We seek the cooperation of all communities to succeed,” Masihul Huq Chowdhury said in his concluding note.