By Andy Sambidge
Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank launches first branch in Khartoum as part of expansion strategy
Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB) on Monday launched a branch in the Sudanese capital Khartoum, as part of its regional expansion plan.
ADIB, Abu Dhabi's biggest sharia-compliant bank by market value, is also the fist lender from the UAE to receive a banking licence in Sudan, it said in a statement on Monday.
Commenting on the bank’s Sudan expansion, Abdullah Al Shahi, head of international expansion at ADIB, said: “We are delighted to be opening our first branch in Sudan. We believe our operations in Khartoum will rapidly become a key strategic element of our international strategy.
"We believe that our new physical presence in Sudan will further enhance our contribution through our delivery of world-class Islamic banking products and services.”
Sudan has an abundance of natural resources including petroleum, gold and soft commodities, with many in the region seeing the country as a very natural trading hub and bridge between the Arab World and Africa.
ADIB’s initial strategy will be based around providing corporate banking and wealth management services to all Sudanese economic sectors.
ADIB is also a stakeholder in Bank of Khartoum, Sudan's oldest bank, along with other Gulf lenders such as Dubai Islamic Bank, Sharjah Islamic Bank.
The Abu Dhabi bank raised $1bn from a sharia-compliant hybrid Islamic bond, or sukuk, to boost its core capital in November.