Emirates NBD (ENBD), announced on Monday the launch of a new Gold Investment Account that will enable customers to buy gold in electronic form. The Gold Investment Account is the first of its kind in the region, and facilitates retail banking customers to invest in gold savings, without the additional risk and costs associated with storing and moving physical gold. Customers holding a current or savings account in UAE Dirhams or US Dollars at Emirates NBD can now open a Gold Investment Account, in order to buy gold in electronic form. Similar to any other foreign currency account, the Gold Investment Account is designated with the currency code XAU, and is denominated in ounces, reflecting the manner in which gold is traded internationally. “The Middle East and Indian sub-continent have always had a great affinity towards gold, backed by its association with jewellery and its inherent quality as a safe haven investment,” said Shekhar Krishnamurthy, Head of Retail Assets and Liabilities, Emirates NBD. “Given the double-digit growth rate that gold has shown in recent years, it continues to play a major role in banking wealth in the region, and more and more of our retail customers have expressed interest in investing in the precious metal.” “The Gold Investment Account is a pioneering initiative from Emirates NBD and is specially designed to enable retail customers to buy gold in electronic form. We have received some very positive initial responses from our customers to this innovative product, and look forward to growing this significantly as people turn to gold as a traditional store of value in the low-interest yielding economic environment,” added Krishnamurthy. The Gold Investment Account is available to both individual and corporate investors wishing to invest in gold. Individual investors can open a Gold Investment Account instantly through Emirates NBD’s Internet Banking platform. Transactions can then be carried out via an e-banking platform or through the physical branch. Once customers set up the Gold Investment Account and decide the amount of gold they want to buy, they can transfer the requisite funds for purchase of the gold from their Dirham or USD account, according to the prevailing gold rate. The account balance statements will be communicated to the account holder in Troy Ounces, the international standard for weighing gold. With the Gold Investment Account, customers in the region have the opportunity to save in gold, starting from as low as Dhs500. Alternatively, they can set up a Systematic Investment Plan (SIP) to buy small units of gold every month in the Gold Investment Account.