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


13/06/16  Arab Bankers Association Condemns Attack on Blom Bank

News A bomb exploded outside the headquarters of Blom Bank, in the Verdun district of Beirut, in the evening of Sunday 12 June. The timing of the attack and the placement of the bomb imply that the intention was to damage the building rather than to kill people, although two people were wounded. The Arab Bankers Association condemns this attack and sends its best wishes to the staff of Blom bank and their families at this difficult time. Blom issued a statement that expressed its relief that the bombing had not led to loss of life but only physical damage. It said that that no documents or pap...


Fri June 3 2016 - Fri June 3 2016
Transparency of Wealth and Taxes: are your clients ready?

Events , ABA Events Our latest 'Corporate Members' lunch, held on 3 June, addressed new regulations and laws that affect the reporting of wealth and taxes. The lunch was sponsored by KPMG. Representatives from thirteen Corporate Members attended the lunch. The discussion was led by three senior executives from KPMG: Mike Walker: Partner, Private Client Advisory Derek Scott: Associate Partner, Head of Tax Investigations Mariam Moi: Senior Manager The KPMG experts pointed to the heightened rhetoric from the UK government on issues of tax evasion and the use of offshore companies as investment vehicles. They...


06/06/16  Ramadan Kareem!

News The Arab Bankers Association wishes its members and their families all the best for the holy month of Ramadan. We take this occassion to remind everyone that we will be holding our Eid dinner on Thursday 7 July. (This is not an Iftar, so will start around 7.30pm. More details will follow soon.)


Tue May 31 2016 - Tue May 31 2016
Annual Foreign Exchange and Commodity Seminar

Events , ABA Events ABA's annual seminar on FX and Commodities featured four prominent experts and was led by Marwan Dagher, HSBC's head of institutional sales in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Janet Henry, HSBC's Global Chief Economist began the seminar with an overview of global growth trends, pointing out the significant role that EU governments are playing in driving European growth, and analysing the role of China in stimulating growth in the global economy. She was followed by David Bloom, HSBC's Global Head of FX strategy who delivered a typically entertaining, but also incisive, analysis of the r...


02/06/16  Middle East banks in London urge more UK sovereign sukuk issuance

News Developing the UK’s Sovereign Sukuk Issuance: Suggestions from the banks Two years after the British government launched the first sovereign sukuk to be issued outside the Islamic world, the Arab Bankers Association asked London-based Middle Eastern banks that are active in the Shari’ah-compliant market to suggest how the British government could develop a programme of sukuk-issuance to capitalise on the success of that initial issue. Five banks responded to the questionnaire. Here is what they said.   Issue Size: individual transactions should be larger than £200...