A message from the Chief Executive Officer

Welcome to the Arab Bankers’ Association!

We are an association of bankers and finance professionals who work in Arab financial markets. Most of our members, both corporate and individual, are based in the U.K. but a significant proportion are based outside. Nearly all of us have spent much of our professional lives living and working in the Arab world.

Our aims are simple: to foster improved relations, information sharing and understanding between the private and public sectors in the Arab world and the U.K. We achieve this through our programme of evening seminars and social events, through tailored events for individual members and their clients, and through personal interaction and introductions that are based on decades of business experience.

You will find more information about our work on the various pages of this website. For example, elsewhere on this page you can download a copy of our Annual Magazine; on the “Events” page you can download presentations given at recent evening seminars; and soon we will be adding a new page to our website -- “Arab Banking News” – where you will see a brief round-up of recent events that are relevant to our membership.

The “Join” page also contains a full list of member benefits.

This is an exciting time for Arab banks and their subsidiaries and affiliates in London. Gulf banks are looking to expand their international operations, banks in Egypt and other north African countries are finding their footing after the uncertainties of the Arab Spring, and debt issuance across the region is increasing.

London hosts the largest and most important banking community in Europe, so its not surprising that it is in London that many of the innovative new financial structures that are shaping Arab finance are designed and sold.

The ABA has been serving and promoting Arab banking in London for more than 30 years and we are as enthusiastic and committed to our mission today as we were on the day we were founded. If you are a member, I look forward to working alongside you in the months ahead. If you are not a member, I hope you will consider joining us.

George E. Kanaan Chief Executive Officer


10/10/16  Stephen Blyth Appointed Managing Director of Arab National Bank London

News Arab National Bank has confirmed Stephen Blyth as the new General Manager of its London branch. He had previously been acting general manager and Deputy General Manager.  Arab National Bank is a Saudi bank in which Jordan's Arab Bank has a 40% stake. Stephen is a seasoned banker with more than 37 years experience. He has been with Arab National Bank (ANB) in various capacities since 1991 and between 1994 and 2004 was based in the bank's head office in Riyadh. He has held a variety of roles during the last 10 years much of which has been focussed on regulatory change.  Stephen s...


27/09/16  New CEO for Saudi Arabia's Riyad Bank

News Saudi Arabia's Riyad Bank announced on 19 September that it had appointed Abdulmajid Abdulla al-Mubarak to replace Talal al-Qudaibi as its CEO with effect from 31 October. Mr. Mubarak had been Deputy CEO since September 2014. He had previously worked for Riyad Bank in a number of roles from 1991 until 2013.  The outgoing CEO, Talal al-Qudaibi, who is retiring, is one of the longest serving bank CEOs in the GCC, having taken up that position in 2002.  Riyad Bank was the fourth largest bank in Saudi Arabia at the end of 2015 (after National Commercial Bank, al-Rajhi and Samba), w...

Thu October 27 2016 - Sat August 27 2016
ABA Annual Gala Dinner 2016

Events , ABA Events The ABA's Gala Dinner for 2016 will be held on Thursday 27 October at the Jumeirah Carlton Tower in London's Knightsbridge.  We will be honouring Saddek El-Kaber, the Chairman of Bank-ABC and the Governor of the Central Bank of Libya for his Distinguished Service to Arab Banking. Mr. El-Kaber will be introduced by Mr. Farouq El-Okdah, the former Governor of the Central Bank of Egypt.  The ABA Annual Gala Dinner is the premier social event in London for the Arab financial community and those who work alongside Arab financial institutions. It attracts 250-300 guests. In addi...


Fri September 23 2016 - Fri September 23 2016
KPMG Briefs Corporate Members on CRS and New Tax Evasion Rules

Events , ABA Events Three senior executives from KPMG briefed ABA corporate members over lunch on the Common Reporting Standard (CRS) and the new corporate offence related to tax evasion.  Peter Grant, Director, Operational Taxes, at KPMG, explained that the requirements of the CRS are similar to those of the US Foreign Account Compliance Act (FATCA) and the the UK's Crown Dependencies and Overseas Territories (CDOT) rules. However, the scale of CRS is much greater than FATCA or CDOY since it extends to any bank customer who is tax resident in a 'reportable juristiction'. About 60 juristictions have agre...


26/09/16  Egypt's IMF Deal: What Chance of Success?

News On 11 August, Egypt and the IMF signed a staff level agreement under which the IMF will lend Egypt $12 billion over three years. The agreement has been seen as a significant achievement for the Egyptian government, removing the threat of a budgetary and foreign exchange crisis, committing Egypt to a programme of economic and fiscal reforms, and opening the way for additional financial aid from other sources.The Arab Bankers Association spoke to Hugh Miles the co-founder of the Cairo-based Al Shafie Miles business intelligence consultancy, about the terms of the IMF agreement and how it is ...