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ila Updates
Jan 08, 2024
ila Bank joins BUNA to enhance cross-currency transactions

Manama, Bahrain: ila Bank, Bahrain’s leading digital mobile-only bank, powered by Bank ABC, has successfully joined the Arab payment system BUNA, a cross-border and multi-currency payment system founded by the Arab Monetary Fund. This makes ila the first digital bank in Bahrain and one of the pioneering banks across the region to offer its customers a secure cross-border multicurrency payments service that is fast, cost-effective, and transparent. Initially, ila customers are able to transfer in AED, with more currencies to be added later for transactions and remittances.

Committed to offering an empowered banking experience to its customers, ila continually partners with industry champions and initiatives that address customers’ fast-evolving needs, while facilitating a robust digital economic ecosystem in the region.

Commenting on this partnership, Nada Tarada, Head of Business & Customer at ila Bank said, “We take great pride in our association with BUNA, which strengthens and adds additional value to our cross-currency transfers offering. With our unique multi-currency accounts offering, we are delighted to be able to offer our customers a fast, transparent and cost effective cross-currency transfer service.”

“We truly appreciate the commitment of the region’s leadership in enabling economic progress through initiatives such as BUNA. This partnership will streamline payments in both Arab and international currencies and will play an instrumental role in the growth and development of the regional economy,” she added.

Mehdi Manaa, Chief Executive Officer of Buna, said: " We are pleased to welcome ila Bank to Buna's network of participants. Our collaboration with Bank ABC group strengthens our commitment to make cross-border payments more efficient and secure. This will in turn facilitate international trade and investment within the Arab region and with the main global partners.

He added: "On this occasion, I would also like to thank the Central Bank of Bahrain for their continuous support to Buna."

BUNA was established under a mandate by Council of Governors of the Arab Central Banks and Monetary Authorities to support further economic and financial integration between Arab countries and expand trade and investment activities with the global trading partners. As one of the first regional cross-border and multi-currency payment systems, it supports Arab transactions in trade, investment and financial transfers in eligible Arab and international currencies across the region and beyond, with links to major trade partners. It is also the region’s first system dedicated to offering clearing and settlement services for payments in various currencies across Middle East, delivering new-age payment solutions aligned with international standards, principles, and compliance requirements.