14 - 20 March 2001

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Bank of Valletta Stockbrokers inaugurated

BOVSL’s premises in Floriana were officially inaugurated yesterday by Prime Minister Eddie Fenech Adami.

Addressing the inauguration ceremony, Bank of Valletta Group Chairman, Joseph F.X. Zahra explained that "Activity on the Malta Stock Exchange has increased steadily over the past few years and, in view of the forthcoming privatisation programme, this should continue to grow healthily, over the coming years. Furthermore, consumer awareness levels have climbed to new heights as a wide cross section of the Maltese population now invest on the Stock Exchange. We are pleased that a favourable environment has recently been created by the legislative changes to allow banks enter the stockbroking arena and in the year 2000, BoV was the first bank to enter the brokerage business. For the Maltese financial sector, this was another first."

Mr Zahra added, "BoV is acknowledged as market leader in innovation and for seeking new avenues for raising finance other than through traditional deposit liabilities. This was confirmed by the overwhelming success of our two bond issues during the year 2000. The transition to non traditional financing is complemented by a drive to increase non-interest income. Given this direction we are constantly on the lookout for opportunities created by the local or external environment. The new stockbroking business and the enhancement of our investment banking role not only yield attractive returns to the Group as a whole, but also make a valid contribution to the development of local capital markets.

Meanwhile, addressing the inaugurating ceremony, Prime Minister Eddie Fenech Adami explained, "It satisfying to see Bank of Valletta taking up the opportunity and challenge presented by the legislation that my government has enacted to keep the country abreast of major economic and political changes, both domestic and international. The setting up of BOV Stockbrokers Ltd will not only benefit the BOV Group by transforming Bank of Valletta into a full financial services provider, but it will also increase the local investors’ accessibility to financial markets, as well as extend local listings to international investors."

The Business Times, Network House, Vjal ir-Rihan San Gwann SGN 07
Tel: (356) 382741-3, 382745-6 | Fax: (356) 385075 | e-mail: editorial@networkpublications.com.mt