Islamic Bank


Islamic bank lending to small businesses

Islamic bank lending to small businesses


SONGKHLA : The Islamic Bank of Thailand is giving loans to new business operators at the grassroots level in the three southernmost provinces to try to revitalise the region's economy, bank chairman Somchai Virunhaphol said yesterday.

Lt-Gen Somchai said the IBT is bringing back economic prosperity to the deep South by extending the loans. The bank will also find marketing channels for the businesses and help with product design and franchising.

The bank was set up in 2003 to offer financial services in compliance with Islamic law.

The IBT chairman spoke at a forum on this year's banking policies and financial assistance to small and medium enterprises (SME) held in Songkhla's Hat Yai district yesterday.

Lt-Gen Somchai said if the loan scheme is successful, it may be expanded to other southern provinces.

The IBT also provides loans to the halal food industry, the Andaman coastal hotel business, and those planning to make the annual Haj pilgrimage, Lt-Gen Somchai added.

In Yala province, Ban Krong Pinang school was reopened yesterday amid tight security after being closed for a week following the killing of school director Sitthichai Chanpibarn on Aug 5.

In the morning, teachers were escorted by soldiers on Humvees and visitors to the school were screened.

Eight of the 20 teachers working at the education centre have sought transfers from the school out of fear for their own safety.

Their requests were being considered by Yala's education zone 1 office.

In the province's Bannang Sata district, a villager was killed and two others wounded in a gun attack in the early hours of yesterday.

A pickup truck parked near the scene of the attack was also set alight.

In Pattani, a village defence volunteer was injured in a drive-by shooting in Muang district yesterday morning.

Also in Pattani, a bomb exploded at a local school in Sai Buri district yesterday morning. No injuries were reported.


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