Emirates Islamic Bank plans to set up subsidiaries in Morocco and Egypt
The bank wants to establish a presence in these markets over the next two years.Emirates Islamic Bank has announced plans to set up in Morocco and Egypt over the next two years.
"We intend to position ourselves on the Moroccan and Egyptian markets by acquiring existing banks or requesting new licenses," said the executive chairman of the bank, Jamal Ben Ghalida, quoted by Emirati newspaper Al-Itihad.
He added that this initiative is a part of the bank's expansion strategy, which aims to "settle in countries with a privileged commercial partnership with the UAE and the Gulf Cooperation Council ".
Islamic finance is already popular in Morocco and Egypt. This financing method could represent - within three to five years - between ten and 20 per cent of Morocco's banking system, according to Standard & Poor's economic analyst Mohamed Damak.
In Egypt, Islamic finance in March 2014 represented approximately 8.1 per cent of total financing, amounting to $632.2 million.
This percentage is expected to increase exponentially due to the growing demand from Gulf companies, according to the chairman of United Bank Mohamed Ashmawy, quoted by newspaper Zawya.