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Arab Bank to establish Europe Arab Bank in London
Source: BI-ME , Author: Trevor Lloyd-Jones
Posted: Tue May 23, 2006 12:00 am

INTERNATIONAL. The United Kingdom's Financial Services Authority (FSA) has given its approval and authorisation for Arab Bank to establish Europe Arab Bank (EAB) in London. The FSA's licensing will enable EAB to have a European passport to branch out in all European Union countries.

As a wholly-owned subsidiary of Arab Bank, Europe Arab Bank will have the benefit of being part of the Arab Bank group, and will have branches in Frankfurt, Paris, Rome, Madrid and Vienna, in addition to London. It will focus on trade-related business between Europe and the Middle East and North African (MENA) region, as well as private banking, corporate finance, and treasury.

Arab Bank's board of directors had previously decided to streamline all its European businesses within a new entity to be incorporated in the UK with a capital of €500 million. Arab Bank's existing branches and subsidiaries in the UK, Germany, Austria, France, Spain, and Italy will become branches of Europe Arab Bank.

Arab Bank Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Abdel Hamid Shoman expressed delight at the FSA's decision and said: "It will provide dedicated resources to serve our clients' needs throughout Europe."

Shoman added: "The European Union is one of MENA's largest trading partners with annual trade volumes exceeding US$250 billion in the last few years. This large market gives us the opportunity to provide a niche service to a growing number of European companies and individuals wishing to invest in the countless emerging opportunities in the MENA region."

Europe Arab Bank's Chief Executive Officer Phillip Monks, said: "There are an increasing number of corporate and private individuals seeking to interact with the MENA region and with which EAB can facilitate and develop new relationships."

"This is a great opportunity for us to utilise our unparalleled access to this region and combine it with our experience across a range of markets and industries," Monks concluded.

Note: Arab Bank is based in Amman, Jordan. It is the first private sector financial institution in the Arab world and the largest Arab banking institution by equity. Arab Bank was established in Jerusalem in 1930 by the late Abdul Hameed Shoman, whose vision was to create a financial institution dedicated to the development of Arab economies.

Today, Arab Bank Group enjoys a shareholder equity base of US$5.4 billion, and more than US$29 billion in assets. The Group has a global network of 400 branches and subsidiaries in 28 countries and five continents, and enjoys a prominent position in key markets and financial centres in Europe, Asia Pacific, and the US.

Arab Bank Group provides a wide variety of financial services to individuals, corporations, government agencies, and other international financial institutions. Its services include corporate, retail, private, investment banking and wealth management.

In 2005, the Group continued its sustainable performance, with a net profit of more than US$503 million (after taxes and provisions) representing a rise of almost 54% over 2004. In the first quarter of 2006, Arab Bank Group's pre-tax profits rose 29.7% to US$186.14 million compared with US$143.5 million in same period of 2005. The Group's total assets rose to almost US$30.0 billion from US$27.5 billion in the first quarter of 2005.



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