The National Bank of Vanuatu’s Premium Banking Center was officially launched on Tuesday by the Minister of Finance and Economic Management, Gaeton Pikioune.

In his address, Mr Pikioune acknowledged the Board and Managment of NBV for innovations to improve banking services that will be easy and more customer oriented.

“There are many challenges in managing an institution like this amidst better banking services and competition,” he said.

“With the current reforms in the government’s State Own Enterprises (SOE’s),the government has restructure the bank in 2012 with the aim for the bank to become a ‘self-sustainable at the same time profitable’.”

The NBV has gone through a string of restructuring since late 2015 and 2016 in order to remain competitive.

“In the process the bank has repositioned Retail Bank and Business Banking team to provide a more focus on customer service, product delivery and lending activity,” Mr Pikioune said.

“NBV is in a well position now to help the government realize its target of Financial Inclusion before 2030.”

As the Minister responsible for banks, Mr Pikioune reiterated that he was pleased to see that NBV has moved on ahead with the advancement of teachnology.

“I want to acknowledged the efforts and initiatives of the bank through its technological development that has strategically positioned itself to combat issues of competition and at the same time remain competitive in an era of Global IsiBanking and BankNet, which i believe are fully operational,” he said.

“NBV must continue to commit itself to remain as the ‘Bank of Choice’ in Vanuatu.”

NBV’s Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Geoff Toone stated that launching of the PBC is part of the new improvements taking place at the NBV, as the largest employer in financial service on a corporate basis in the country.

“We are one of the few employers that have staff living working in every single provinces in the country, recent developments have been taking place to improve and identifying ourselves as Vanuatu’s own bank by providing quality customer service,” he said.

“The changes and upgrade made in the bank will also be done for other branches throughout the country and the new PBC is part of the effort of NBV in improving our customer service.”

Tony Motuliki, Executive General Manager Retail at the NBV said that the bank has a strategy plan named RoadMap 2023 and one of the 4 key pillars of the plan is a ‘positive customer experience’.

“At NBV we are always looking to provide a positive customer experience and we have recently launched our new uniform and we are here again to launch our Premium Banking Center,” he said.

“The launching of the PBC to better serve this segment of market- we believe this segment will largely interact with us via our electronic means such as internet, ATM and mobile,however those that choose to deal with us face to face will do so using our PBC-we have a small dedicated team that have been specially trained to deliver premium service.”

Mr Motuliki concluded that the bank is very much committed to serving the mass unbanked through its 28 branches and over 300 rural banking centers and will continue to provide their financial literacy program which has been well received by the communities.

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