Banks operating in the Egyptian market started to take a number of precautions to protect their employees and clients from the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19).
On Sunday, the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) issued several decisions to protect bank employees and clients, as well as reduce the repercussions of the Coronavirus on the Egyptian economy as a whole.
The board of directors and executive management of the Commercial International Bank (CIB) – Egypt held a meeting to review and discuss all policies and procedures to address the crisis, in light of the precautionary measures taken by the CBE to ensure the safety of employees and customers after the concerned internal departments modernised all background policies and procedures for the outbreak of the Coronavirus.
In its meeting on Sunday, the CIB approved some preventive measures, including launching several e-awareness campaigns for employees offering some preventive advice, suspending business trips to affected countries, and obliging employees returning from abroad to work from home for 14 days.
The bank also suspended all internal activities that include large gatherings, like training courses and made them available online. The bank also provided hand sanitizers in all its headquarters and branches. It also conducts periodic and intensive disinfection of all branches, in addition to providing gloves to employees who deal with banknotes.
In a statement to the Egyptian Exchange on Monday, the CIB confirmed that it is closely following the situation through the World Health Organization and the Egyptian Ministry of Health’s reports. It is monitoring developments continuously to take what is necessary and inform the Board of Directors of the updates.
Moreover, the National Bank of Egypt (NBE) took the initiative to declare a state of emergency in its branches, especially in the tourist governorates, and took several measures to protect its employees and customers from the infection.
The bank distributed masks and gloves to its employees to protect them against the virus, especially the branches in the governorates that receive foreigners normally like Aswan and Red Sea. The bank also circulated an email to employees containing some protection tips to raise awareness of the virus.
Maged Fahmy, chairperson of the Industrial Development Bank (IDB), said that with the emergence of the virus abroad, the bank started issuing awareness bulletins to all workers, in addition to holding seminars about the preventive measures adopted in the bank. Employees were divided to work rationally according to work need. Mother employees were allowed to work remotely, in order to take care of their children during their 14-day school suspension.
He added that disinfectants were provided in the bank, noting that the bank made agreements with specialised companies to provide an integrated package that includes disinfectants, wipes, and gloves. An emergency plan was prepared to face the crises in the event of a further outbreak of the disease.
Fahmy stressed that IDB was one of the first banks to take a number of preventive and precautionary measures against the Coronavirus, to protect the bank’s employees and customers in all its branches across the country, in line with the state’s approach with the virus.
He pointed out that the bank’s management will not hold back from taking any preventive action in the interest of its employees and customers to protect them from this virus. It will also prepare an emergency plan to ensure continuity in providing customers with their banking needs.