Egypt’s largest bank by total assets, the National Bank of Egypt (NBE), is joining Ripple’s blockchain-powered payment network RippleNet for remittance services. 

According to a report by local news outlet Youm7 on Tuesday, NBE has signed a co-operation agreement with Ripple in order to gain access to “more effective channels” for remittance. 

NBE Chairman Hisham Okasha said the agreement would add a “new and important tributary” for receiving remittances from correspondents via RippleNet, and claimed the partnership to be a “first of its kind” among Egyptian banks. 

Vice Chairman of the Board Dalia El-Baz told news organizations that RippleNet’s network now contains more than 300 banks and financial institutions spread across the globe, with the number of member organizations expected to grow exponentially in the coming years. The NBE executive also said that RippleNet would allow the bank to better address the needs of clients.

Figures from the World Bank show Egypt to be in the top five remittance recipient countries, with migrants sending more than $29 billion in 2018 alone. 

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