190312 uae central bank
The UAE Central Bank located on the Baynoonah street in Abu Dhabi. Image Credit: Gulf News archives

Abu Dhabi: The Central Bank of the UAE (CBUAE) joined ‘AFAQ’ Payments System, which is operated by the Gulf Payments Company (GPC) and owned by the GCC Central Banks.

‘AFAQ’, a system linking payment systems in GCC countries, offers the service of executing financial transactions in local currencies to customers in the GCC countries in real time with lower fees.

Along with the CBUAE, Barclays Bank joined the AFAQ system, becoming the first financial institution operating in the UAE to achieve this step and begin using the system’s services.

To date, the Central Bank of Bahrain, the Saudi Central Bank, and the Central Bank of Kuwait have joined ‘AFAQ’, in addition to a number of commercial banks from the Kingdom of Bahrain, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the State of Kuwait. The remaining GCC Central Banks and commercial banks will join in due course, in line with an agreed work schedule.