Offshore Banking in UAE

Offshore Dubai

Dubai has developed into one of the world’s leading financial centres offshore. Dubai authorities have worked hard to elevate Dubai to the level of global recognition...

Dubai Offshore Companies

Dubai offshore companies can be incorporated as Companies Limited by Shares, Limited Liability Companies and Recognised Companies, which are among the three main types of Dubai...

Dubai Offshore Banks

Dubai offshore banks are regulated both by the Central Bank and the Financial Services Authority. Dubai offshore banks provide their services solely to individuals and businesses that are...

Banks in Dubai

Banks in Dubai enjoy a very high degree of regulatory standards and have come to be known among the leading financial institutions internationally. Banks in Dubai work very closely with the Central Bank of the United Arab Emirates which is a critical element of the economy of the Emirates and one of the important financial advisors and bankers of the Government. The Central Bank in Dubai was established in 1980 and has continued to play a very important role in Dubai banking and the offshore services sector.

Policies for monetary standards, credit facilities and banking in Dubai are formulated and enforced by the Central Bank. These policies extend to banks in Dubai which are expected to comply so that the overall objectives for financial institutions and banking in Dubai can be achieved, while preserving the stability of the Dubai banking sector and the UAE currency, the UAE Dirham.

Banks in Dubai are placed into two principal groupings, namely, branches of foreign banks in Dubai that are licensed by the Central Bank, and domestic banks which hold public shares and are licensed in compliance with the Union Law No. (10) of 1980. Banks in Dubai, including domestic and foreign banks in Dubai, operated long before the establishment of the Central Bank in 1980 as well as the Currency Board.

With so many banks in Dubai having operated before the establishment of the Central Bank, many banks in Dubai were foreign owned, with several branches operating in Dubai and overseas and resulting in the disproportionate increase of foreign branches of banks in Dubai as opposed to those that operated locally.

This caused the monetary authority to set a limit to the number of branches that foreign banks in Dubai could operate overseas to a maximum of eight. Upon coming into full stream, the Central Bank issued 5 new licenses in 2003 to financial institutions and banks in Dubai. This increased the total number of foreign banks in Dubai and representative office to forty-eight in Dubai and the UAE put together. With reference to national banks in Dubai and the UAE together, however, the total number branches jumped from 21 to 330 in 2003.

In addition to national banks, foreign banks and branches of foreign banks in Dubai, there are also banks in Dubai with restricted licenses; these are also referred to as restricted license banks. In Dubai, banks with restricted licenses are in fact commercial banks and are not permitted to conduct deposit taking business in Dirham. Instead, deposits at these banks in Dubai should be only in foreign currencies. These Dubai banks provide nonresidents and residents alike with credit services. There is also investment banking in Dubai. Investment banks in Dubai are governed by the Union Law No. (10) which was introduced in 1980.

Many banks in Dubai are established at the Dubai Financial Center because of the increasing wealth and success of the UAE in general. While set up at the DIFC, banks in Dubai are able to provide sophisticated financial services to the wide variety of businesses that operate in and outside the UAE. Growing sophistication in Dubai banking allows access to commercial banking in Dubai, treasury services, trade and export finance, correspondent banking and project and infrastructure banking, among others.

Back to Top