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Wed 3 Sep 2014 12:21 PM

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UK's largest Islamic bank to expand services in Malaysia

Bank Muamalat and Bank of London and The Middle East will develop Islamic private banking services in the southeast Asian country

UK's largest Islamic bank to expand services in Malaysia
(For illustration purposes only)

Malaysia's Bank Muamalat and Bank of London and The Middle East (BLME) will develop Islamic private banking services in the southeast Asian country to widen the banks' business lines.

BLME, Britain's largest Islamic bank, is aiming to diversify its revenue streams with a focus on its corporate banking and wealth management divisions, while Bank Muamalat's has limited private banking products.

Under the agreement, BLME will help develop sharia-compliant banking products for the Malaysian market aimed at high net worth individuals, the bank said in a statement late on Tuesday.

"With wealth management continuing to be a strategic priority for BLME, this partnership was the natural next step," said chief executive Humphrey Percy.

Bank Muamalat, owned by sovereign fund Khazanah and auto-to-property conglomerate DRB-Hicom Bhd, said the Islamic private banking platform could be ready within a year.

The agreement marks the firs foray in Asia for BLME, although a bank spokeswoman said there were no plans to apply for a banking license in Malaysia.

BLME opened a Dubai representative office in the third quarter of last year and listed its shares on Nasdaq Dubai in October. Last month, the bank said it was aiming to pay its first dividend in early 2016.

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