Bahrain - Citi Bahrain has celebrated the first anniversary of its Global Technology Hub, which is on track to employ 1,000 Bahraini coders over ten years.
Currently, the Hub comprises 110 Bahraini employees, out of which 91 Bahrainis have started at the Citi Seef premises, with 19 additional hires set to join soon.
Female participants at the hub make up 22% of the total Bahrainis, outperforming the average of females in other Citi tech hubs around the world.
When selecting a country for its Global Technology Hub, Citi conducted a rigorous technical coding test and interview process, with Bahraini talent showing the highest pass rate when compared to other regions. Even more encouraging was the level of female talent in Bahrain's candidate pool, as Bahrain ranks first globally in multiple subindices according to Meta's Inclusive Internet Index (2022), including female digital skills training and STEM education, open data policies, and privacy regulations.
Commenting on the anniversary and the contribution of female participants in the hub, Shaikha Hessa bint Khalifa Al-Khalifa, Member of the Supreme Council for Women and Chairwoman of the Bahrain Women in Fintech Committee, said: "We are pleased to see Citi's achievements a year after the Hub's launch. Such initiatives contribute positively to achieving the goals of the Women in Fintech Committee working under the National Plan for the Advancement of Bahraini Women, and the National Gender Balance in Future Sciences Initiative, in line with the directions of Bahrain's Economic Vision 2030 as well as the kingdom's digital transformation initiatives. It makes us proud to see Bahraini women directly contributing to the operations and growth of Citi's Global Tech Hub."
Furthermore, commenting on the occasion, HE the Governor of the Central Bank of Bahrain, Rasheed Mohammed Al Maraj, said: "The Financial services sector has progressed over the last decade, and we expect more changes in the coming years as the pace of digitisation increases. We are proud to see Bahraini talents and competencies benefiting and contributing in developing global centres affiliated with reputable financial institutions in order to promote digital solutions in the financial sector."
According to Citi Bahrain's CEO, Michel Sawaya, Citi has witnessed great results since the launch. "The coders had a big impact on developing our digital platforms, such as Citi Velocity and CitiFX Pulse. Their positive contribution helped implement important features, and subsequently take part of bigger projects that have helped us serve Citi clients globally," he said.
Citi launched its Global Tech Hub last year as part of a strategic partnership between Tamkeen, Bahrain's labour fund, and the Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB), the kingdom's investment promotion agency. A first in the region, the Hub aims to develop and improve digital solutions for Citi's regional and global clients while creating 1,000 tech jobs for Bahrainis over ten years.
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