JICA Chief Representative, Yamada Tetsuya (left), and HNB Deputy General Manager – Wholesale Banking Group, Damith Pallewatte (right) exchanging the agreement
August 14th, 2023 (Colombo): Working towards a shared objective of sustainable socio-economic development in Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka’s leading private sector bank HNB PLC has partnered with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
Through the partnership, JICA - Japan’s Official Development Assistance (ODA) executing agency - will leverage its experience as a long-standing development partner to the island nation, and HNB’s broad expertise and island-wide branch and customer network, to solve social issues by enhancing economic development and poverty alleviation, and driving socially responsible, environmentally sustainable finance.
The partnership will help focus resources into agriculture, dairy production, value chain financing, women’s entrepreneurship development, MSME development and digital transformation. Moreover, the collaboration will also prioritize investments into enterprises and initiatives with the potential to support mitigation and adaptation to global climate change and other critical social protection services.
“HNB is honoured to partner with JICA to support a sustainable, inclusive, grassroots-led revival of the Sri Lankan economy. The close friendship and shared respect between Japan and Sri Lanka has always been a source of strength for our nation, and we take this opportunity to express our gratitude to JICA for partnering with HNB in our shared mission to drive progress on sustainable development, enhance livelihoods, and modernize our nation’s economy from the grassroots up,” HNB Managing Director/CEO, Jonathan Alles said.
Commenting on the significance of the agreement, JICA Sri Lanka Office Chief Representative, Tetsuya Yamada said: “With this partnership, we will be able to expand our reach to more people, providing greater benefits and a stronger development impact through HNB’s wide network and expertise, which JICA alone could never do. Particularly, incremental effect is expected for the empowerment of those people and enterprises who struggled as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and economic crisis. Through our joint efforts, we can help them to overcome their difficulties and get back onto a growth trajectory.”
About Hatton National Bank
With 256 customer centres, HNB is one of Sri Lanka’s largest, most technologically innovative private banks. Consolidating its legacy in sustainability, good governance and corporate excellence, HNB was crowned the Best Corporate Citizen for 2022 at the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce Best Corporate Citizen Awards. The bank secured four additional accolades, including being among the Top 10 Best Corporate Citizens and taking home the Governance category and Sustainability Champion for the Finance sector titles.
Additionally, HNB was ranked among the World’s Top 1,000 Banks list compiled by the prestigious UK-based Banker Magazine for the sixth consecutive year in 2022, in addition to being crowned the Best Retail Bank in Sri Lanka for the 13th occasion at the prestigious International Excellence in Retail Financial Services Awards 2023 hosted by the Asian Banker Magazine.
About Japan International Cooperation Agency
Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is the executing agency of Japan’s Bilateral Official Development Assistance (ODA). JICA, the world biggest bilateral aid agency, works in over 150 countries and regions. In accordance with its vision of “Leading the World with Trust,” JICA, with its partners, will take the lead in forging bonds of trust across the world, aspiring for a free, peaceful and prosperous world where people can hope for a better future and explore their diverse potentials. In Sri Lanka, Japan has been providing financial and technical assistance since 1954 and is one of the biggest donor to the country. On behalf of the people and the Government of Japan, JICA contributes to improve life of people in Sri Lanka.