Arab Today, arab today abu dhabi islamic bank opens london branch
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Abu Dhabi Islamic bank opens London branch

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Arab Today, arab today Abu Dhabi Islamic bank opens London branch

Abu Dhabi - Arabstoday

Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank, the second-largest Islamic lender in the UAE, opened its first branch in London\'s swanky Knightsbridge on Wednesday. Sheikh Khalid Bin Zayed Al Nahyan joined Prince Andrew, the Duke of York, to open the office at One Hyde Park, the 1 billion pound luxury Candy and Candy development located near the Harrods department store. Trad Al Mahmoud, chief executive of Adib Group, said the bank was hoping to attract clients from the UAE who use London as their base for business and personal transactions and who desire Islamic finance services. \"This launch signifies the merging of our Islamic financial values with the advanced financial infrastructure and ecosystem of the UK,\" said Mahmoud. The UK is the largest Islamic finance centre in Europe, with $19 billion out of global assets of $1.7 trillion and is home to five fully sharia-compliant banks, data from the UK Islamic Finance Secretariat (UKIFS) estimates. Although there are now 22 banks in the UK licensed to conduct Islamic finance transactions, Adib is the first UAE-based financial institution to receive a banking operation licence from the UK Financial Services Authority (FSA). Britain\'s largest standalone sharia bank, Bank of London and the Middle East (BLME) is awaiting regulatory approval to move in the reverse direction to tap into the close ties between the Gulf and the UK. It is aiming to start operations in the Gulf, initially with a representative office this year, and a branch or subsidiary in the longer term, Chief Executive Humphrey Percy told Reuters in an interview. One Hyde Park, completed just over a year ago, is one of London\'s most expensive retail and residential developments, housing the most expensive flat in Britain, sold for 136 million pounds ($213.24 million). Investors seeking safe havens for their cash have flocked to central London, stoking demand for the best shop units on the UK capital\'s prime shopping streets. It was built by Project Grande (Guernsey) Ltd, a joint venture between Christian Candy\'s company CPC, and Waterknights, a company owned by the prime minister of Qatar, Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jabr Al Thani. It is also home to a Rolex outlet and a store selling McLaren\'s new sports car.

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