With the opening of its new branch in the Dubai International Financial Centre, the United Bank for Africa (UBA) has expanded its activities to the United Arab Emirates (DIFC).
The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA), the financial regulatory body of the special economic zone – the Dubai International Financial Centre – will oversee the operation of the DIFC Branch under the Category Four license.
According to a statement from the bank, the UBA office in the DIFC will provide services to corporate and financial institutions as well as clients throughout the Middle East with a primary focus on correspondent banking, relationship management, and advisory services.
The Middle East, Africa, and South Asia (MEASA), which consists of 72 nations and has a population of over three billion people and a nominal GDP of $7.7 trillion, presents prospects that the UBA Group will be able to capitalize on with this new growth.
This strengthens its established reputation as the global bank for Africa, facilitating capital and trade movements between Africa and the rest of the globe.
Tony Elumelu, the chairman of the UBA Group, said during the Thursday opening of the new subsidiary in Dubai that despite the Group’s entry into the Gulf region, UBA is still concentrating on its strategic goal of setting the standard for conducting business in Africa.
According to Elumelu, “UBA (DIFC Branch) will facilitate the financing of trade transactions between the Middle East and Africa, enabling trade finance and investments, working with our franchises in 20 African countries and the major financial centers of London, New York, and Paris.
Since this is the first time we will be present in this region of the world, we have been anticipating this day. We are aware that if we do not have a presence in the Gulf, our international expansion will be lacking,” he added.
Kennedy Uzoka, the bank’s group managing director and CEO, also spoke at the ceremony and noted that the company now formally operates in 24 countries and on four continents, serves over 35 million customers, and is continually expanding.
We are the only bank with Nigerian roots that has branches outside of Nigeria in the UAE, he claimed. The fact that those who came before us passed via other points demonstrates the authority and respect the Dubai authorities have for UBA. Our presence in Dubai demonstrates that UBA is a powerful franchise with a global expansion.
“The authorities and business climate here in the DIFC are great, and UBA is seeing Dubai as the gateway for Africa, which is why we are here: to be closer to our clients, to be working with them, and to assist businesses and trade flow into Africa through the UBA franchise. Therefore, we are really happy.
“Trade, Commerce, and Investments in Africa are expanding in the Gulf Region and Asia,” said Vikrant Bhansali, CEO of UBA (DFIC). By utilizing the UBA Group’s position in major financial centers, UBA (DFIC) will improve the group’s capacity to ease Gulf investors’ and banks’ access to the African markets. We will support trade, promote business, and support increased investment across all industries in Africa.