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Standard Bank of Namibia

If Sara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila had her way, it seems, there would be no award for a best bank in Namibia this year. In her budget speech in May, Namibia's finance minister launched a broadside against the country's banks, saying that their high charges were having a "crippling effect... especially [on] small and medium enterprises."

Be that as it may, Standard Bank of Namibia continues to lead the way, having posted an increase in headline earnings of 10.4% and in earnings per share of 8.9% in 2004. It has also continued to build on its product suite, introducing the South African bancassurance model into its retail operation, offering simple embedded products through its relationship with Liberty Active (previously called Charter Life).

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