Dubai: Scotiabank became the first Canadian bank to operate from the Dubai International Financial Centre yesterday after receiving its licence from the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA).
The licence also permits ScotiaMocatta, the bank's precious metals division, to open its own branch in the DIFC.
Ahmad Humaid Al Tayer, Governor of DIFC, said: "As the DIFC begins to play a more prominent role in the global economy, we are keen to expand the industry cluster within the financial district with new companies from across the global financial industry that can bring unique new expertise to the region.
"Scotiabank's presence will further enhance the geographical diversity of firms in the DIFC."
ScotiaMocatta has operated in Dubai since 1998 through an alliance with National Bank of Dubai.
"This is a strategic initiative that reflects our confidence not only in the precious metals market, but also in the region," said Barry Wainstein, vice-chairman and deputy head, Global Capital Markets, and Global Head, Foreign Exchange and Precious Metals.
"As the size and sophistication of the precious metals market in the Middle East continues to grow and evolve, Scotiabank recognises the importance of establishing a stand-alone presence in the region," said Pramod Mohan, senior executive officer, at the Dubai branch. The location chosen was the DIFC since it's the hub of the financial activity in the region.
"By virtue of its ability to offer a secure, stable and growth oriented platform for international financial institutions, DIFC has continued to attract leading financial institutions over the past year despite the global financial crisis," said Abdullah Mohammad Al Awar, CEO of the DIFC Authority.
"Scotiabank's decision to base the regional branch of its division ScotiaMocatta in the financial district is testimony to the confidence of the global financial industry in DIFC."