Somalia central bank invites foreign banks to set up after fifty years of time out


The Central Bank of Somalia has opened the banking sector to foreign banks for the first time in almost half a century. The central bank will only license ‘reliable’ lenders plus it wants International banks to partner with local financial institutions reports Bloomberg.

Somalia has at least six commercial banks with assets worth 194 million dollars and 143 million dollars in deposits operating within its borders with a majority concentrated in Mogadishu.

According to IMF there are 13 pending applications for commercial banking licenses. Kenya’s bank – Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) is among the banks looking to venture into the Somalia’s market.

MasterCard Inc. last year formed an alliance with Somalia’s Premier Bank Ltd. to issue debit cards in the last African markets aside from those under sanctions where it wasn’t present according to Bloomberg