Palestinian entrepreneur Bashar Masri is founder and principal driving force behind Rawabi, the first Palestinian planned city. He serves as Chief Executive Officer and as board member of Bayti Real Estate Investment Company, the firm that launched and continues to develop the growing city.
Masri’s vision of a new Palestinian city originated in 2007. The initiative gained momentum at the 2008 Palestine Investment Conference in Bethlehem, where Masri signed a strategic partnership agreement with the Qataris, the project’s sole investment partner. The intervening years have seen Masri’s dream take flight – the dream of a green, smart city for the 21st century for all Palestinian people offering every conceivable urban amenity and a world-class infrastructure.
Masri is chairman of Massar International, a company he founded in 1995 to promote private sector development and economic growth in Palestine. Under his leadership, Massar has grown to include more than 30 subsidiaries in the fields of financial services, real estate, media and communications, logistics, retail, agribusiness, and information technology.
Masri serves as board chair of the Palestine Development and Investment Company (PEX: PADICO) which helps drive the Palestinian economy with investments in vital industrial sectors including real estate, telecommunications, tourism, industry, agriculture, environment, and energy. He is also the vice chair of Palestine Telecommunication Company (PEX: Paltel) the main telecommunication operator in Palestine.
Named by the World Economic Forum as a "Global Leader of Tomorrow" and ranked among the World's 50 Greatest Leaders in 2018 by Fortune magazine, Masri was featured in a full-length segment on CBS’ 60 Minutes: “Rawabi: One Man’s Vision for a Palestinian Future” (09 December 2019).
Masri also dedicates time to numerous philanthropic and private sector boards, including serving on the Development Advisory Council of the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC), the Board of Trustees of An-Najah National University, the Deans’ Council at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, and the Board of the Palestine Olympic Committee. He is also board chair of the Palestine Chess Federation
Masri graduated from Virginia Polytechnic University with a B.S. in Chemical Engineering in 1983. He worked in Saudi Arabia, the U.S and the U.K. before returning to settle in Palestine.