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Sun 18 May 2008 11:05 AM

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HSBC launches diamond banking unit in Dubai

New unit will provide full range of financial services to local diamond trade.

HSBC has established a diamond banking unit to finance the local and regional diamond trade, it said in a statement on Saturday.

Its new unit will provide a full range of financing solutions, including import credits, working capital and receivables financing, as well as factoring services and precious metals hedging.

Jean Van der Donckt, director of diamond finance at Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC), said: "The diamond trade is extremely capital-intensive, and recent studies estimate local diamond banking needs in excess of US$2 billion, with finance being sought for all activities."

DMCC provides advisory and counselling services that make it easier for local bankers to set up and promote diamond banking activities in Dubai. It has also launched initiatives to develop the industry's physical infrastructure and ancillary services.

The forthcoming launch of DMCC's Almas Tower, which will house more than 3560 international diamond companies, is expected to increase the need for diamond banking facilities.

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