Net Profit after Zakat
0% Financing exposure in Tobacco, Alcohol & Gambling
Net Profit after Zakat
0% Financing exposure in Tobacco, Alcohol & Gambling
Green syndicated loan
Started using solar energy system in 44 branches to reduce utilities consumption
of financing renewable energy projects
ISO Green Certification for the head office building
Digital to Manual Ratio
Donation in 2022
in salaries and benefits paid
25.5 Bn. in financing for SMEs
Renovation Of children with disability Association clinic
Key social projects delivered
kidney transplants through Shifaa platform
batches of Graduate Development Program since 2015
total training days
ISO/DIS 37301:2020 Compliance
ISO 22301:2019 Business Continuity Management
Sharia Board Resolutions
Policies & Frameworks
4 out of 11
Independent Board Directors
growth in female employees in 2022
of female employees at group level
growth in female customers since 2015
In its yearly worldwide sustainability roundup, the prestigious Harvard Business Review (HBR) noted that 2022 was a tumultuous year for humanity and business alike. In a year marked by extreme weather, a war crisis in Ukraine, high inflation and debilitating supply chain problems, the HBR report said, the pressures on business to “do more and better” expanded rapidly and no major environmental, social or governance (ESG) issue was off the table. Against this backdrop; Al Rajhi Bank was steadfast in its commitment to providing state-of-the-art Sharia-compliant banking services during the year under review while staying true to its ESG values.
Islamic banking has historically been compatible with 21st century sensibilities surrounding ESG ideals and the broader objectives of sustainable finance. Consequently, in over 50 years of strictly Sharia-compliant operations; ESG has become an integral part of Al Rajhi Bank’s DNA, protecting the Bank from investments that are at “high risk” of failing to meet ESG criteria. Through Sharia guidelines, the Bank performs a culturally distinct form of ethical investing, choosing not to participate in any investments that fail to meet the guidelines, including alcohol, gambling and tobacco products.
Complementing its Sharia-based ESG orientation; Al Rajhi Bank has adopted a sustainable model which has helped it grow its reputation as the World’s Leading Islamic Bank delivering a well-managed, disciplined financial institution exercising sound governance practices.
The Bank sustained and strengthened its reputation as “A Leader in Financial Conduct and Sustainabilit” during the reporting period; identifying and working on high-impact activities aligned with its overarching Bank of the Future (BOTF) strategy and “unbank the bank” operating model which helped improve third-party ESG ratings. Al Rajhi Bank re-evaluated its sustainability outlook in 2022, with key quantitative and time-bound outcomes for its ESG objectives identified and aligned to overall business KPIs and accountabilities in order to drive the successful delivery of both business and ESG strategies.
For this reason, a new ESG vision was developed in 2022 in line with the overall Corporate outlook: Realising a sustainable future by pioneering a responsible financial ecosystem for customers, employees, society and the environment.
This ESG vision is built on a desire to help bring about a more prosperous, socially and environmentally responsible society within the Kingdom. The Bank aims to be a leader in ESG innovation; creating a responsible financial ecosystem with transparency and integrity at its heart, while also demonstrating the Bank’s commitment to tackling climate change and minimising its environmental impact. The ultimate goal is to satisfy the needs of all stakeholder groups including customers, employees, society and the environment through four ESG pillars:
Private Sector Contribution to GDP Corporate Loans Market Share
Saudi Home Ownership Mortgage Market Share
SME Contribution to GDP SME as % of Corporate Portfolio
KSA Net Zero by 2060 Green Financing and Funding
Move to Cashless Society POS Terminal Market Share
Financial Inclusion through Digital New Account Opening Online
Digital Leader for Customer Insight Active Digital Customers
Digital Execution and Offering End-to-End Digital Personal Financing
Digital Core Banking Platform Digital to Manual Ratio
Modernize our Technology % of Application Modernized
Sharia Compliant Number of Sharia Resolutions
Board Independence Number of Independent Board Members
Customer Experience Net Promoter Score
Corporate Governance Number of Policy and Procedure reviewed
Regulatory Compliance Fines % of Total Operating Income
Employer of Choice Employee Engagement
Employee Learning Total Employee Learning Hours
Employment Opportunities Female Employee Ratio
Support Local Content Spending on Local Suppliers
Denotation and Social Initiatives Total Spending on Social Activities
The first pillar signifies Al Rajhi Bank’s continued commitment as a leader in the financial sector to realise the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 objectives by supporting the development and diversification of the Saudi economy. This includes the Bank’s increased focus on the private sector and SMEs to improve their contribution to the GDP and its expanding product and service portfolio to increase Saudi Homeownership among other Vision 2030 targets. The Bank’s focus on financing both public and private sector investments in green energy projects to achieve the Kingdom’s Net Zero objectives; alongside its own investments in renewable energy and resource conservation, is also highlighted as an element of this pillar.
The Bank’s continued investments in creating a digital future supported by the best in class technology and infrastructure is emphasised via the Bank’s second ESG pillar. In Al Rajhi Bank’s drive towards financial inclusion through digital transformation, the Bank has achieved an unrivalled industry standing as a digital leader in customer insight as well as in nurturing future-ready digital talent.
As a Sharia-compliant financial institution,Al Rajhi Bank demonstrates exemplary financial conduct and good governance, which is reflected through the third ESG pillar. The Bank’s unrelenting efforts to deliver the best customer experience in the Kingdom coupled with fair treatment and the utmost safety and security falls under this pillar; supported by benchmarked good governance practices. The Bank’s wide-ranging social development initiatives fall under the fourth ESG pillar – fostering ties with communities.Al Rajhi Bank continues to earn its social license to operate across the Kingdom by enabling financial access, volunteering and giving back to the community, and empowering underserved segments – with special focus on female empowerment – through employment opportunities and financial independence.
The Bank also launched a Sustainable Finance Framework during the year under review as a basis to issue Green, Social or Sustainable Sukuk, Loans and other sustainable financing Instruments. In September, a Second Party Opinion (SPO) was obtained on the Framework from S&P Global Ratings, which concluded that the Framework aligned with International Capital Market Association (ICMA), Loan Market Association (LMA), Loan Syndications and Trading Association (LSTA) and Asia Pacific Loan Market Association (APLMA) principles.
As in previous years, Al Rajhi Bank’s consolidated ESG Report for the year under review was prepared in accordance with the Saudi Exchange ESG Disclosure Guidelines (www.sseinitiative.org) issued by the Saudi Exchange following its voluntary commitment to promote sustainable and transparent capital markets by becoming a Partner Stock Exchange of the United Nations Sustainable Stock Exchanges (SSE) initiative.
The SSE initiative is a UN Partnership Programme; organised by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the UN Global Compact, the United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) and the UN-supported Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI). The SSE’s mission is to provide a global platform for exploring how exchanges in collaboration with investors, companies, regulators, policymakers and relevant international organisations can enhance performance on ESG issues and encourage sustainable investment; including the financing of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
In order to better focus on the metrics the Bank believes are important and articulate its approach and progress to all stakeholders, the Bank tracks three globally acclaimed external ESG Rating Providers to ensure fair and accurate assessments supported by quantified data of its ESG implementation. The three selected ESG Ratings are Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI) and Sustainalytics - two of the most widely followed ratings by investors, funds and indices; and S&P Global; a key active-rating agency to maintain open dialogue with; in order to ensure continuous improvements across key ESG metrics.
MSCI, Sustainalytics and S&P Global will remain the three primary external metrics that the Bank tracks going forward, with a high-level objective for the 2023 financial year to improve all three ratings by promptly identifying stakeholder concerns, rapidly responding to global and local operating environment shifts and evolving the Bank’s ESG approach to better serve our stakeholders.
In 2022, Al Rajhi Bank stayed committed to its ambition of diminishing its carbon footprint, undertaking a number of energy-saving programmes and renewable energy opportunities in addition to exploring new environmental initiatives throughout the year.
During the reporting period, the Bank accelerated its journey towards “net zero” by decreasing both direct and indirect carbon emissions. Tuder Real Estate – the real estate, property and facility management arm of Al Rajhi Bank – enhanced power and energy efficiencies of the Bank by launching the real estate properties energy efficiency programme which saw the installation of solar panels, AC upgrades, window film installation, and introduction of power down equipment and LED lighting. These initiatives contributed to a notable drop in the total annual energy bill.
Tuder also integrated a number of new features to the Bank’s Building Management System (BMS) that was introduced in 2021 to promote energy conservation at Al Rajhi Bank Headquarters in Riyadh. These included freshwater utilisation for chillers and chilled water for the tower’s cooling systems, medium voltage distribution feeders for energy monitoring and conservation purposes, monitoring and controlling mechanisms for specific lighting distributions, and AC temperature control settings and fresh air distribution in the Head Office Tower and Operations buildings. The Bank also runs a largely paperless operation, supported by a shift from physical to digital across its branch network with the use of tablets and digital channels to conduct daily transactions. Significantly, 95% of all new current accounts during the year were opened digitally, while around 40% of personal financing was done digitally end-to-end.
Al Rajhi Bank continued to integrate and prioritise environmental risk as a key evaluation criterion in its overall approval process to finance a project or business, strongly aligning with the Saudi Green Initiative objectives under Vision 2030. In 2022, the Bank actively engaged with leading environmental consultants to assess projects from environmental and social perspectives in order to ensure that they meet internationally recognised environmental guidelines such as the Equator Principles and the Green Loan Principles.
Al Rajhi Bank is cognisant of the growing concerns around climate change globally and is keen to play a key role as a financier in managing potential environmental risks, in order to capitalise on opportunities related to green financing. During the reporting period, Al Rajhi Bank successfully concluded the largest Sharia-compliant syndication in the Middle East that complies with globally accepted ESG practices, with the total USD 1.165 Bn. in proceeds to be directed towards projects that qualify against the Bank’s stringent Sustainable Finance Framework.
Under its “creating a digital future” ESG pillar, and in line with the Bank’s overall digital shift, the Bank has embarked on a mission to ensure the use of land and property for all its operations has zero to minimal impact on biodiversity. With this objective in mind, Tuder took measures to ensure that the use of land for new or redesigned bank branches during the reporting period were mindful of the biodiversity of the various locations and actively worked towards minimising environmental impact.
Tuder also commenced installations of two high-tech initiatives to manage the branch and subsidiary network’s water consumption; namely, ultrasonic water flow meters to monitor, control and measure water utilisation as part of the BMS, and upgrading the Reverse Osmosis system in the Head Office tower to utilise wastewater for irrigation activities. Both these initiatives will be kick started in the first quarter of 2023.
During the year under review, the Bank continued to adhere to its strict recycling guidelines and its e-waste management commitments. In addition to the standard disposals, the Bank donated electronic devices such as laptops, printers and full PC setups in April 2022, with plans underway to develop policy to activate an annual donation of electronics.
Among the sustainability elements and enhancements; Tuder continued to add to existing buildings, a key highlight was solar panel installations in over 40 bank branches in 2022, demonstrating Al Rajhi Bank’s commitment to increase renewable energy generation in KSA.
In 2022, the Bank continued to actively pursue green financing deals, expanding focus more towards renewable energy production assets such as green ammonia and hydrogen projects in the region. The Bank continued to remain an active participant of the Kingdom’s proposed SAR 18.8 Bn., 4-gigawatt green ammonia project that is set to make Saudi Arabia a leader in the global “carbon-free” hydrogen market, with the financing expected to close in the first quarter of 2023.
During the year under review, the Bank also closed the financing of the Red Sea Utilities Project, a multi-utility initiative consisting of approximately 340MW of solar power generation, and 110MW of thermal power generation from bio-diesel, at an overall project cost of nearly SAR 4 Bn. The Bank also explored various financing and refinancing opportunities for solar projects in the region during the reporting period.
From its inception, Al Rajhi Bank has built a reputation for nurturing relationships with all stakeholders, from employees and customers to society at large. The year 2022 saw a continuation of this commitment to cultivate rewarding relationships across the Bank’s sphere of influence.
Al Rajhi Bank follows all relevant Saudi labour laws and regulations, and carefully assesses the annual Employee Engagement survey results and feedback received from employees to develop action plans that address areas highlighted for further improvement. In 2022, based on employee feedback, tailored action plans were developed for Performance Management, Learning and Development, and Talent Management, three key HR pillars. These were reviewed and approved by the People Council, which was established in 2020 with an intent to encourage greater engagement and ownership from the C-Level and leadership teams regarding people and talent development practices. Such a targeted engagement approach resulted in an increased Employee Engagement Index score of 74% in 2022, compared to 71% in 2021.
All employees were required to acquaint themselves with the Al Rajhi Bank Code of Conduct in 2022 that, as was the case in previous years, covered a wide range of topics and mandatory considerations including human rights, non-discrimination, fair dealing, anti-bribery, fraud, embezzlement, theft, money laundering, financing terrorism, insider trading, harassment or extortion, unethical behaviour of any colleague(s) such as breach of honesty and integrity and a whistle-blowing policy. With the understanding that employees may not always feel comfortable to raise concerns through conventional, open communication channels, the Bank continues to provide secure and innovative whistleblowing channels for employees to safely and fearlessly “speak up”, raise concerns confidentially and, if preferred, anonymously, and bring any discrepancies to the attention of the management and senior leadership.
Al Rajhi Bank implements and maintains the highest standards of occupational health and safety (OHS) standards across its Kingdom-wide branch and subsidiary network, including:
Employees are also encouraged to follow a series of OHS modules made available on the Al Rajhi Bank Academy’s Taleem online platform on the above, with the ability to choose their own learning plan for more effective learning.
During 2022, the Bank’s Human Resource division launched a number of internal health awareness campaigns to raise awareness on all-round health and wellbeing, including key events such as:
The Bank is fully compliant with new rules and regulations pertaining to occupational health and safety (OHS) requirements. Several employee health checks and wellbeing awareness programmes were held throughout the year, all of which were well received and appreciated by employees across the Al Rajhi Bank network. The in-house gyms at the Head Office tower and Operations Centre continue to be well-utilised by employees, and the Bank continues to arrange special offers with external vendors associated with wellness and fitness providers to promote employee wellbeing.
Al Rajhi Bank’s generous leave policy continued during the year under review with the standard medical, casual and annual leave as well as additional days-off for special occasions; 2022 saw many employees benefiting from Hajj leave as well as marriage leave, birth leave which are complemented by celebratory payments, congratulatory messages and gifts.
Acknowledging the growing importance of ESG, the Al Rajhi Bank School of Leadership – the leadership development arm of ARB Academy conducted a number of ESG training sessions during the reporting period. One for executive management and the other for senior management of the Bank and its subsidiaries. This exercise was part of ongoing efforts to enhance organisational capability and understanding with regard to ESG, designed especially for Al Rajhi Bank in alignment with its ESG framework and overarching BOTF strategy.
The sessions were conducted by renowned experts with over two decades of experience and covered the relevance and importance of ESG to the Bank and to the wider financial industry. How the pillars of ESG relate to the Bank and its operating model were also discussed at the training sessions, which were attended by over 120 participants and were well received by both executive and senior management.
For overall training and development, the Bank follows a structured talent management and succession practice with individual development plans, further strengthened by a market and performance driven compensation strategy. Al Rajhi Academy delivers best in class leadership, banking, operational and technology certifications to nurture a talent pool with required skills and knowledge to perform emerging and evolving job roles effectively.(Refer to the HR section on pages 95 to 105 for more details).
The Bank also entered a partnership with online skills development platform Udacity to develop new skills including advanced analytical and IT skills of new employees and graduates trained and qualified from the Bank’s Academy and Graduate Development Programme.
Gender equality remains a key agenda for the Bank across all levels of its operation including human capital development, with 51% of training hours being completed by female employees during the year.
Workplace feminisation improved in 2022, with all-female recruitments for over 1,700 roles created at the new Quassim Contact Centre, which served as a major new source of employment in Quassim. For many of the female candidates, this was their first entry to the workforce. During the reporting period, the Bank was also able to accommodate flexible working arrangements for some staff with a work-from-home option.
The Online Procurement Portal launched in 2020 was further enhanced in 2022 with a number of feature upgrades; one was the Spend Dashboard, which provides accurate and customisable visibility of all Procurement spend including the ability to search and analyse by spend category, by individual or group of suppliers, by timeline, etc.
A key upgrade to the portal was the Procurement Transactions Dashboard that went live by the end of the year, which offers a complete dashboard of all macro and micro levels of the procurement process. This includes turnaround times, tenders, procurement service level agreements (SLAs) and Procurement Committee details, along with additional important functions such as a Suppliers’ Dashboard and Contracts’ Dashboard.
In yet another upgrade, the portal implemented an enhancement that allowed the Bank to fully automate all functions of the Project Approval Committee, from sending out meeting agendas to members and project managers, to providing informative, at-a-glance views of projects. It also allowed the Committee to circulate projects status to members and finalise the minutes of meetings. This has materially improved the speed and quality of execution of the Bank’s major transformation programme.
|Total number of suppliers engaged
|Total procurement spending (SAR Bn.)
|Total number of local suppliers engaged
|Procurement spending on local suppliers (SAR Bn.)
|Percentage of spending on local suppliers (%)
As part of the Bank’s initiatives aimed at supporting local content, local suppliers were encouraged to register on the Procurement Portal, resulting in 95% of the total spending was on locally-owned businesses in 2022 and the total spending was increased by 18%.
At Al Rajhi Bank, data is considered a valuable asset that plays a vital role in improving performance and productivity. With the intent of maximising its value and ensuring compliance in a way that protects all parties involved, an Al Rajhi Bank Data Governance Policy was introduced in 2022.
The policy ensures that applicable data standards and recommended practices are aligned with the overall objective of increasing compliance with relevant laws, enhancing customer experience and becoming more effective in managing data. The Bank also continued to improve the overall quality of critical data elements within its data ecosystem during the reporting period, to enable improved decision making.
The new Data Governance Policy sets the standards for data processing through its lifecycle. It also ensures privacy and protection in a way that is aligned with regulatory requirements and with the Bank’s own strategy. The policy covers 14 Data Governance Domains.
1. Data governance office
2. Data catalogue and metadata
3. Data quality
4. Data operations
5. Document and content management
6. Data architecture and modelling
7. Reference and master data management
8. Business intelligence and analytics
9. Data sharing and interoperability
10. Data value realisation
11. Open data
12. Freedom of information
13. Data classification
14. Personal data protection
With the fast paced adoption of digitalization, the cybersecurity risk is growing spurred by an expanding threat landscape. The Bank is employing dynamic defenses via a number of countermeasures for prevention, detection, and response in an effort to proactively address current cybersecurity challenges. In order to ensure the efficiency of the Bank’s overall cybersecurity posture, the Bank has also implemented a number of security measures using the defense-in-depth and multilayer security principles. By applying the best cybersecurity standards recommended by the national cybersecurity and financial sector regulators, the Bank has reinforced its current cybersecurity governance procedures and ensured the confidentiality, integrity, privacy, and availability of all business and technological processes.
The Bank is continuously improving its cybersecurity culture by implementing a variety of training and awareness initiatives that are directed at both customers and employees. To make sure that all of its business services are trustworthy and secure, the Bank continuously conducts cybersecurity assurance assessments on its systems, apps, and networks. Additionally, the Bank regularly engages recognized vendors in independent internal and external audits to confirm the efficiency of installed cybersecurity controls and compliance with national and international standards including the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS), SAMA, SWIFT, SARIE, and the Saudi National Cybersecurity Authority (NCA). The Bank has a Security Operation Center that is operational around-the-clock, 365 days a year, and it continuously monitors and promptly addresses cybersecurity threats and attacks. The Bank has shown resilience against cyberattacks as a result of the implementation of cybersecurity measures, with no cybersecurity-related outage or operational impact.
Given its dominant position in the Retail Business, Al Rajhi Bank has the largest network distribution in the Kingdom and the Middle East region, supported by 516 branches, 174 remittance centres, 4,727 ATMs and 533,442 Point of Sale (POS) terminals to service customers and provide access to financial services. This widespread network of access points has resulted in Al Rajhi Bank claiming one of the largest active customer bases in the region, with over 13.3 Mn. customers in total spread across the Kingdom. The Bank’s rapid adoption and scalability of digital infrastructure has also greatly contributed to the introduction of innovative approaches to increasing financial inclusion, especially with underserved demographics. Al Rajhi Bank continues to be the leading bank enabling home ownership in Saudi Arabia with a mortgage market share of 42.9% supporting the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 goal to increase home ownership for Saudi Nationals.
Al Rajhi Bank continues to promote financial inclusion with all branches equipped to serve persons with disabilities, and was the first bank in the region to launch ATMs with disability access. In 2022, the Bank continues to upgrade its ATMs with technologies such as voice assistance and sign language to support the blind and visually impaired, the deaf and hard-of-hearing, as well as persons with mobility impairment, aligning with the Saudi Vision 2030 objective of supporting the disabled with tools and facilities to become more independent and be integrated into society. A majority of Al Rajhi Bank branches have reserved disabled parking spaces with all branches ready to serve customers with disabilities.
In 2022, the Bank continued to grow its financing portfolio for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the Kingdom, providing a range of financial solutions through its dedicated SME Business Unit, aligned with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 objectives to increase SME contribution to the Saudi GDP. The Bank also serviced micro businesses through its dedicated Micro and Small Business unit (MSB), strongly encouraging entrepreneurial culture in the Kingdom with financial assistance. The rapid digitalisation of core banking platforms and automation of processes has also empowered this fast-growing customer base with efficient services and eased approval processes and has led to rapid turnaround times. Call Centres with dedicated numbers for SME and MSB customers continue to strengthen the Bank’s reputation as the Kingdom’s leading bank for customer service. The Bank also entered into a number of partnerships and agreements with the Ministry of Finance, the Real Estate and Tourism Development Funds, as well as semi-government and private sector entities to identify new funding sources and opportunities for the SME sector. (Refer MSME).
In 2022, Al Rajhi Bank became the Kingdom’s first bank to offer integrated banking services to self-employed individuals. The Bank signed an agreement with the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development’s Future Work Company to provide such integrated services to freelancers. These solutions will enable freelancers licensed by the Ministry to realise their aspirations and contribute to innovative future ways of working.
Al Rajhi Bank also served specific credit needs of consumer segments that were beyond the Bank’s risk appetite through its fintech subsidiary Emkan Finance, increasing financial inclusion and simplifying access to microfinancing. (Refer Emkan Finance).
The Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) team; together with the Marketing team; launched a number of initiatives in 2022 to expand the Bank’s financial services, financial literacy, and access across underserved market demographics. Among these was a social responsibility initiative to provide financial education to students and introduce them to the risks of fraud. Implemented by the Bank’s Anti-Fraud Department, a series of lectures titled Financial Awareness and Fraud Risks were conducted in November in coordination with select secondary schools. One session in Riyadh was attended by over 140 students.
The reporting period also saw Al Rajhi Bank sponsor the ninth Youth Forum titled “Our Youth is Our Future” and the Self-Employed Youth Award, with the Emir of Al Qassim recognising Al Rajhi Bank’s contribution to the event and its support for SMEs with the presentation of an honorary award.
The health sector continued to be one of the most supported sectors for Al Rajhi Bank’s CSR initiatives, as the Bank worked with the Ministry of Health as well as the independent civil Health Endowment Fund to contribute to medical facilities, treatments and general access to good healthcare. In 2022, the Bank fully sponsored the establishment of the Al Rajhi Bank Diabetes Centre, a first-of-its-kind healthcare centre valued SAR 13.5 Mn. in the city of Buraidah; with the capacity to provide over 100,000 medical services annually.
The Bank also participated in a number of key events during the year under review on designated dates; including on World Blood Donor Day, World ADHD Awareness Day, World Autism Awareness Day, World Marrow Donor Day among others; to raise awareness on pressing health-related topics.
2022 saw the culmination of Al Rajhi Bank’s efforts in supporting the country’s healthcare sector – more recently during and following the pandemic the Bank donated over SAR 50 Mn. across many initiatives – with Al Rajhi Bank being honoured by His Royal Highness Prince Faisal bin Bandar bin Abdulaziz, Governor of Riyadh Region, as well as by the Health Endowment Fund, for the Bank’s continued efforts and strong commitment to ensure access to healthcare for all Saudi nationals.
Other focus areas for the Bank’s CSR projects include education and capacity development as well as community development. Such notable initiatives carried out in 2022 reflected Al Rajhi Bank’s pioneering role in charitable work, and its keenness to actively contribute to social responsibility through many national initiatives and projects supporting the charitable sector, in order to achieve the overarching goals of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030. Key initiatives in 2022 included:
The governance framework at Al Rajhi Bank comprises the General Assembly, the Board of Directors, the Shariah Board, as well as five Board committees and a group of executive management committees of the first and second levels.
For more information, please refer the Corporate Governance Chapter.
Refer to the Board of Directors.
No significant changes were made with regard to regulations, compliance or disclosure of Al Rajhi Bank’s financial statements during 2022, with the Bank continuing to publish its interim condensed and expanded Consolidated Financial Statements on quarterly basis and annual basis. Both statements are prepared in compliance with endorsed International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) as issued by the Saudi Organisation for Chartered and Professional Accountants (SOCPA) and in compliance with the provisions of Banking Control Law, the Regulations for Companies in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Bank’s by-laws. All such standards, rules and regulations are consistently applied under the supervisory monitoring by the Saudi Central Bank (SAMA) to ensure proper disclosures and a full financial reporting integrity has been met.
Al Rajhi Bank has a dynamic platform of financial and public interest reporting to afford highest efficient and transparent disclosures to the public and investors. This robust reporting platform is designed to ensure and validate financial information and reports through strongly validated financial data processing engines, financial standards compliance, and policies and procedures quality assurance. Al Rajhi Bank also has many internal governance committees and ensures wide ranging involvement of monitoring departments that work towards producing accurate financial information for all of public users.
The Bank’s financial reporting function is also regulated by the Capital Market Authority (CMA), which ensures specific levels of transparency and investor information sessions are being conducted. Among these rules and regulations is the appointment of the external auditors, approved solely by the shareholders’ general assembly and from the big four international audit firms.
Al Rajhi Bank has revenue recognition policy and procedures that are fully compliant with the international financial standards and uses the effective profit yield in driving the Bank’s income and fees. The Bank also renders some services to customers where the relevant fee and income are recognised as soon as those services are rendered.
Al Rajhi Bank makes a varied range of Zakat and tax payments to Zakat, Tax and Customs Authority (ZATCA). The Bank employs internal and external qualified experts to ensure perfect compliance with all Zakat and tax rules and regulations applied in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The Zakat paid for the year 2022, higher by 16% than the previous year’s, was one of the highest Zakat payments made by a Saudi corporate.
Al Rajhi Bank follows the Capital Market Authority (CMA) regulations of one vote per share and disclosure of 5% or more ownership.
The Bank’s compensation philosophy is derived from a commitment to attract, retain, develop, motivate and equitably compensate employees of the highest calibre and talent in recognition of their relative contribution in effectively conducting the business of the Bank and in achieving the Bank’s strategic goals and building a sustainable succession pipeline.
As a highly sought-after employer of choice, Al Rajhi Bank continued to provide employees with a compensation package that consists of base salary, allowances and variable pay (incentives/bonuses) that are highly competitive with those provided by comparable organisations for similar levels of duties and responsibilities. The employee’s compensation package is built towards rewarding performance with emphasis on the “At Risk” component to align and encourage behaviours that support the Bank’s values and risk management framework, adherence to the internal control framework and compliance to regulatory requirements.
The Bank’s compensation policies are reviewed annually by the Board Compensation Committee, and recommendations for changes are submitted to the Board for approval. The implementation of the policy is monitored by the Board Compensation Committee with an independent audit and confirmation shared with SAMA on a semi-annual basis.
Al Rajhi Bank’s Compensation policy was designed within a risk reward framework. Risk factors are an integral part of the balanced scorecard for senior managers’ performance management. Risk measures thresholds have been defined with required triggers for variable and long-term bonuses qualifying assessments. To ensure long-term and other risk factors are fully considered, the proportion of the variable bonus that is deferred increases with levels of seniority.
Al Rajhi Bank is committed to the highest standards of ethical, moral and legal conduct and corporate behaviour. The Board of Directors and Senior Management of the Bank are committed to maintaining the highest standards of honesty, integrity and transparency, and promoting a corporate culture that adheres to these core values.
Compliance is already instilled in Al Rajhi Bank’s culture and is viewed as an integral part of its business activities. It is the responsibility of all employees, starting at the top, to observe high ethical standards of honesty, integrity and transparency that will strengthen the Bank’s relationship with its customers and, consequently, its reputation.
Various regulatory requirements were introduced by a number of regulatory bodies during 2022 such as the Anti-fraud Framework, Related-parties Guideline and the Corporate Governance Manual, further enhancing corporate behaviours across the Bank. Al Rajhi Bank also continued to improve its governance process with the objective of combating misconduct across the Bank and its customer base. A Bank-wide Financial Crime Risk Assessment was conducted during the reporting period to ensure that the specified objectives offer enough clarity; so risks are identified and assessed in line with the objectives. During the reporting period, the Bank identified a number of risks that might hinder the achievement of its objectives across the network and analysed these risks in order to understand how they can be managed.
During the year under review, the Bank considered the potential for fraud, misconduct, bribery, corruption and money laundering while assessing potential risks that may arise in the achievement of related objectives. This helped select and create control activities that contribute towards mitigating risks which might bring about such cases of misconduct.
Major investments were made during 2022 in technology with the objective of enhancing financial crime prevention, detection and response capabilities. Advanced strategies were adopted including advanced financial crime detection strategies, revealing trends and patterns that the data of the Bank and its customers should follow. Artificial Intelligence (AI) and data mining methods were also utilised during 2022 to generate new data from existing databases, helping develop and understand different patterns to predict customer behaviour as well as the future performance of the Bank’s different functions. Variations from expected outcomes will be directly identified and mapped on to the actions that employees and other parties have taken.
The Anti-fraud Function was one of the major areas that were revamped in 2022. The Bank engaged one of the leading consulting firms in the world with the objective of developing a best-in-class Anti-Fraud Function by adopting best practices from global or regional markets to minimise incidents of fraud, whilst minimally impacting the customer experience. Prevention and detection capabilities were also enhanced by utilising enriched data, leveraging Cognitive Analytics, AI and Machine Learning. Predictive analytics were applied to behaviours in a bid to understand anticipated future behaviour; which will enable the timely highlighting of any irregularities. While developing the anti-fraud programme, emerging technologies were also considered to pre-empt fraud detection and allow proactive decision-making.
The Bank is committed to verifying, on an ongoing basis, the identity of its customers and ensuring that information and documentation is up-to-date, complete and accurate in order to mitigate financial crime risks. The monitoring of customer profiles is conducted through periodic reviews, event driven reviews, ongoing screening and transaction monitoring. Customer transactions continued to be monitored through a transaction monitoring system that was upgraded and enhanced during 2022; reinforcing it with more sophisticated tools and techniques. Monitoring is based on certain rules or scenarios that trigger alerts that are reviewed by the Anti-money Laundering and Counter-terrorism Financing (AML-CTF) Department staff. This function reduces the risk of money laundering and terrorism financing and the risk to the Bank’s reputation, and also avoids regulatory sanctions. By the end of the reporting period, the Compliance Group was in the process of implementing the SAS transaction monitoring system – a modern, flexible and automated AML Monitoring System compatible with Al Rajhi Bank’s core banking system.
Al Rajhi Bank, at its core, remains ESG compliant in its overarching strategy of becoming the “Bank of the Future”, supporting the diversification of the Saudi economy, assisting home ownership and wealth creation for individuals, financing micro, small and mid to large enterprises to achieve their potential, and navigating the Kingdom towards Vision 2030 as a reliable, stable and well-funded bank that conducts itself at the highest levels of conduct and technological performance.