BBK, Bahrain’s pioneer in retail and commercial banking, celebrated the economic, political and social achievements of women by embracing a comprehensive Women Empowerment policy approved by its esteemed Board of Directors. The policy was announced internally to all the employees of the BBK group. A special ceremony, coinciding with the International Women Day, was held on March 13th, 2015, to share the Bank’s vision and guidelines related to this policy; the event was attended by Mrs. Elham Hassan, Member of the Board of Directors of BBK, Mrs. Safya Bucheery, spouse of BBK Chief Executive Mr. A.Karim Bucheery, VIP guests and the women employees of BBK.
With objectives that portray a clear vision and consistent messages to encourage women empowerment and gender equality at all levels, the new policy guides employees to adopt gender equality principles in their professional lives and fosters an organizational culture that exemplifies the Bank’s commitment to women empowerment and its corporate social responsibility.
“There is a growing consensus that gender equality and women’s empowerment are definitely crucial to our new agenda. Thus reaffirming our commitment to inclusion, dignity and respect for women and to valuing them as assets and recognizing their abilities to form a stronger foundation for economic development aligned with the Kingdom’s 2030 visio. BBK and as always supports the government in all its initiatives and our policy is just the reflection of the support the Bank has for the countries vision.” stated BBK Chief Executive, Mr. A.Karim Bucheery, on the occasion of the announcement of the policy.
The main purpose of the policy is to emphasize that Gender Equality is central to economic and human development and that it concerns the whole society. In the Kingdom of Bahrain, notable progress has been made in women’s representation in public leadership, governmental sectors, medicine, education and training, and in labor force participation. Women have become presidents, bank directors, entrepreneurs, and can drive this forward. Reinforcing Bahrain leading position in the GCC in terms of women empowerment, the Bahraini Government had announced in 2008, 1st of December to celebrate women in Bahrain in appreciation of all women, their achievements and creative contributions across the different sectors that elevated the economic development of the Kingdom.
“Equal opportunity for women and men supports economic growth and helps raise the standard of professional Bahraini Workforce and career progression modules. Supporting and empowering women, be it through the bank or from a social perspective, has become an integral part of our corporate social responsibility agenda,’ he added
Mr. Hassaan Burshaid, BBK Assistant General Manager- Human Resources and Administration said, “The main purpose of the policy framework is to establish a clear vision and set of guidelines for the Group for the development of services, policies, procedures and practices that promote gender equality and empower women internally and externally. BBK is committed to affirming high-level support and directing top-level policies to serve this purpose. By paying equal remuneration, including benefits, for work of equal value, the Bank will employ policies and practices free from gender-based discrimination.”
Today, 35% of BBK employees are women, among which many have excelled to reach high positions in managerial levels and many are on a progressive move to reach the same.
And to accelerate the development of potential women managers through "fast track" programs, BBK will create and implement internal mechanisms and programs until a gender-balance in senior management is achieved.
By ensuring equal access to all Bank-supported education and training programs, BBK will invest in enhanced workplace policies for women advancement at all levels. BBK will also expand and reinforce business relationships with women-owned enterprises, including small businesses, and women entrepreneurs.