DUBAI, Sep 15 (Reuters) – Standard Chartered (STAN.L) seeks to add bankers to focus on sustainable finance, project finance and capital markets in Saudi Arabia, a market it says will become a “trailblazer” for its years to come, said a senior executive.
Standard Chartered started offering banking services through its branch in Saudi Arabia this year with a team of 25 after obtaining a banking license in 2019.
The license has helped the bank to grow beyond the capital markets business it has conducted in the country since 2011.
“This is just the start and we will continue to add more as the business grows. We have the ability to quite easily double what we currently have,” said Sunil Kaushal, regional CEO of the Bank for Africa and the Middle East, referring to headcount. .
“Remember we have a strong presence at the regional office, so some will be new hires, others will be moves from here to the kingdom,” he told Reuters.
On Wednesday, Fahad al-Mubarak, governor of the Saudi Arabian Central Bank, officially inaugurated the branch during a roundtable in Riyadh.
Kaushal said the bank’s strategy in Saudi Arabia is to work with subsidiaries of global companies and financial institutions, while participating in transactions that contribute to the country’s economic development.
He said the Islamic bank would also be a huge opportunity in the Saudi market.
“For many years to come, Saudi Arabia will be – for this region of Africa and the Middle East – the contribution leader,” Kaushal said.
Currently, the United Arab Emirates, Pakistan, Nigeria and Kenya are the largest banking markets in Africa and the Middle East.
Standard Chartered was among other banks hired this year to lead energy giant Saudi Aramco’s inaugural dollar sukuk issue, which raised $ 6 billion.
Standard Chartered was also among the banks hired by Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, the Public Investment Fund, as members of an ESG panel for its medium-term capital raising strategy, IFR News reported.
Reporting by Saeed Azhar. Editing by Jane Merriman
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