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UAE Financial Sectors : Top companies in banking and finance sector in the UAE. List of banks, Islamic finance companies, stock markets, investment & financial services in UAE
UAE Financial Sectors : Top companies in banking and finance sector in the UAE. List of banks, Islamic finance companies, stock markets, investment & financial services in UAE

UAE Financial Sectors

UAE Financial Sectors : Top Companies in Banking and Finance Sector in the UAE

UAE Financial Sectors : Top companies in banking and finance sector in the UAE. List of banks, Islamic finance companies, stock markets, investment & financial services in UAE

UAE Financial Sectors : Top companies in banking and finance sector in the UAE. List of banks, Islamic finance companies, stock markets, investment & financial services in UAE

UAE Banking Industry

Banks play a key role in establishing a well-developed financial system within the country, which is vital in securing sustainable growth. Through providing finance to individuals and firms as well as creation of jobs, banks contribute to the overall wellbeing and growth of the economy.  So, a reliable and strong banking system is considered as a primary pillar of a sustainable economic development.

The banking sector in UAE plays a dynamic role in the economic development through the mobilization of financial resources and providing the required financing for the support of the national economy and creating the required investments for that purpose.

Gross Domestic Product (GDP), key indicator of growth, stood around AED 1.4 trillion at current prices in 2015 (-0.7% growth rate). Meanwhile The Real GDP (GDP in fixed prices) increased from 1.141 trillion in 2014 to 1.184 trillion in 2015 with a growth rate of 3.1%. Domestic Product for non-oil sectors grew by 7% to reach about AED 1.040 trillion (77% of GDP). Financial services sector has contributed with around 10% of GDP(increased by 2%), and 13% of non-oil sector domestic product with a total value of around AED 133 billion, and so leading all sectors in terms of growth of 9%

UAE Banks

UAE banks – both domestic and foreign – are the backbone of the financial industry, providing retail and corporate services to members of the private and public sectors. Top banks in the UAE include:

The Central Bank of the UAE is the primary financial regulatory authority. It is mandated to direct monetary, credit and banking policy and supervise its implementation in accordance with the state’s general policy and in ways meant to help support the national economy and stability of the currency.

The main drivers of growth of the banking sector can be summarized as follows:

The size of assets – Total assets of the banking sector in the UAE rose by 8 times since 2000, to reach AED 2.4 trillion in 2015, and to realize an increase of 7.4% compared with 2014 constituting around 182% of GDP at current prices and 238% of non-oil Domestic Product and so leading the sector to be the largest in MENA region. As of 2015 local banks (includes the local Islamic banks) accounted for 85% of the total assets to reach around 2.089 trillion., while total assets of the Islamic banks accounted 19% of total banks assets to reach AED 464 billion.

Deposits – Total deposits increased by 3.3% in 2015 to reached AED 1471 billion compared to AED 1421 billion in 2014.  The financial depth, which represents the ratio of deposits to GDP, reached 108% of GDP and 141% of non-oil domestic product, reflecting the importance of the banking sector for the economy

Gross Credit – Gross credit increased by 8% in 2015, reaching around AED 1486 billion compared to AED 1378 billion in 2014. The ratio of lending-to-Stable Resources of banks remained during the whole year of 2015 above 85% and so contributing to financial stability.  As regards Islamic banks, their funding increased by 15% in 2015 to reach around AED 306 billion from AED 266 billion in 2014.

Numbers of branches – There was no significant change in the number of branches of banks in UAE in 2015, the number still around 1004. Meanwhile, The number of ATMs increased by 5.6% in 2015, to reach 5119 ATMs,

Capital Market Indicators – The performance of investment and financial services declined significantly in the capital market during 2015. The trading activities decreases by 27.1% in 2015. The telecommunication sector registered an increase of 49%. The consumption goods sector came in second with rise of 30%/ While all other sectors recorded a decrease in their activities, and so indicating the level of investors’ confidence in the banking sector in UAE.

Global Competitiveness indicators – According to the Global Competitiveness indicators (GCI), The UAE improves by one place to 16th (out of 138 countries) as it continues to lead the Middle East and North Africa region, building on improvements in competitiveness in recent years. This year gains in areas such as technological adoption and business sophistication. Overall, the UAE boasts a number of competitive strengths: infrastructure in top notch (4th overall), goods, and labor markets are open and efficient.

Investments – The financial sector has secured the lion’s share of foreign investment. The volume of foreign investments amounted to AED 770 billion in 2014 of which about AED 393 billion in financial and insurance activities (52% of the total foreign investment). From other side, the domestic loans to deposits ratio hit 94% in 2015.

Employment – Employment Banks in UAE contribute favorably to the welfare of the country and its people by generating employment opportunities. Number of employees in the banking sector increased by 3% to reach 40159 in 2015 from 39,051 in 2014. Still has almost tripled since 2000, with UAE nationals constituting around 32% of the work force (around 13000).

Islamic Finance

The global Islamic finance sector has been growing rapidly.  Islamic finance is not just for Muslims but is based on an Islamic ethical foundation. Trade in money for the sake of profit is forbidden, but trade in goods is permitted.  Transactions must be based on assets or other tangible goods, in order to avoid what is considered usury, not in compliance with sharia law. Islamic banks have a different structure from traditional banks but the services they offer are similar.

Sukuk has become a very attractive financial instrument. According to the 2014 Global Islamic Finance Report, $1.813 trillion of assets are being managed in a sharia compliant manner.

Stock Markets

The UAE hosts three stock exchanges: Nasdaq Dubai (, Abu Dhabi Securities Market ( and Dubai Financial Market (

The UAE as a Financial Center

Established in 2004, Dubai International Financial Center (DIFC) is a financial free zone that offers businesses and investors advantages such as security of contracts, independent courts, 100 percent ownership and a friendly tax regime. Located strategically between East and West, DIFC provides a stable and secure platform for businesses and financial institutions to tap into the emerging markets of the Middle East, Africa and South Asia.

Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) is an international financial center for local, regional and international institutions. In collaboration with other international financial centers, global institutions and regulators, Abu Dhabi Global Market develops and supports member institutions with the regulatory framework, legal jurisdiction and attractive business environment they need for sustainable business growth.

Outward Investment

Overseas investments have been a critical component of the UAE’s economic development strategy for decades as the country has sought to diversify where and how it invests its financial assets. The UAE Government regards such investment as a security net for future generations who will one day face a depletion of the country’s energy resources.

This strategy led to the creation of a number of government-owned investment institutions such as:

  • Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA)
  • Abu Dhabi Investment Council (ADIC)
  • Mubadala Development Company (MDC)
  • International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC)
  • Dubai World
  • Dubai International Capital (DIC)

These government investment organizations have been active and responsible participants in global financial markets for over three decades. Representing patient and responsible capital, these professionally managed entities include some of the world’s oldest, biggest and most respected government investment funds.

Like private equity firms, pension funds and other institutional investors, UAE investment organizations seek to maximize risk-adjusted returns.

Recently, Abu Dhabi investment institutions clarified their roles and investment approaches and took a number of steps to enhance international understanding and cooperation.  In particular, they clarified that they haven’t ever used and will never use their investment organizations or individual investments as a foreign policy tool.

The Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA) co-chaired the IMF-sponsored International Working Group (IWG) to create the first-ever set of best practices. The IWG comprises both investing and recipient countries and reached a shared set of principles called the “Santiago Principles.”

In this process, Abu Dhabi has accepted the need of other governments for increased scrutiny of inbound investments that have potential national security implications—so long as the process is clear, fair and timely. For example, to date, Abu Dhabi investment organizations fully accept the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) review process, and remain committed to abiding by both the letter and the spirit of the law.

Inward Investment

The Arab World Competitiveness Report 2013, issued by the World Economic Forum (WEF), ranks the UAE highly among Arab countries and in the 24th position in the Global Competitiveness Index (GCI). It states that the “country’s competitiveness reflects the high quality of its infrastructure…as well as its highly efficient good markets.”

Top Companies in Banking and Finance Sector in the UAE

The UAE is always flooded with lucrative career opportunities in different sectors. There are different options that you can take up to start a career. However, banking and financial industry (BFSI) in the UAE offers a great opportunity to kick-start a dynamic career.

One of the leading online surveys revealed that the job seekers in the UAE’s banking and financial industry are likely to witness more opportunities coming their way as BFSI is on a hiring spree. Moreover, BFSI lead other sectors in the UAE with an increase of 38% compared to last year in terms of online job listings. The following is a list of 10 Reputed Companies in the UAE’s Banking and Financial Sector:

1. Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (Abu Dhabi)

Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank was ounded in 1997, Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB) was established as a Public Joint Stock Company through the Amiri Decree No. 9 of 1997. Starting its commercial operations in November 1998, the bank was inaugurated by His Highness Sheikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the UAE Minister of Information and Culture, in April 1999. ADIB carries out all its contracts, transactions and operations in accordance with Islamic Shari’a principles.

ADIB works with a clear vision to be the leading Islamic financial services group and has a mission to deliver financial solutions for the global community. It offers world-class financing solutions, including Car Finance, Personal Finance, Education Finance, Travel Finance, Instant Finance and ADIB Job Loss Protection, among others.

The financial institution offers excellent career opportunities and work environment that encourages its people to take new challenges and grow professionally. It offers excellent careers and Graduate Development Programs for experienced professionals as well as Students.

2. DAS Holding (Abu Dhabi)

DAS Holding was established in 2006, DAS Holding is a reputed International Investment Holding Company based in Abu Dhabi. Known as a leading name in the UAE’s investment holding company, DAS Holding is a conglomerate of subsidiaries and industries, offering a broad range of products and services that are well supported by a strong global network of associates and partners. The company represents a key business partner for entrepreneurs, governments and multinational corporations who seek to nurture and develop a new company.

DAS Holding includes a team of highly skilled and experienced professionals who work in alignment with the company’s vision to be the leading holding company in the UAE. Its workforce presents a multicultural organization with people hired from different parts of the globe. It offers unique career opportunities to its people.

3. Dunia Finance (Abu Dhabi)

Dunia is a reputed financial institution set up as a strategic partnership between Mubadala Development, A.A. Al Moosa Enterprises, Waha Capital, and Fullerton Financial Holdings (a wholly owned subsidiary of Temasek Holdings). The company has its financial centers in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah and Al Ain. The company is dedicated to deliver quality financial solutions to cater to the needs of its clients in the UAE. Its service portfolio includes solutions related to working capital facilities for small businesses, credit cards, loans and deposit facilities for non-individual customers.

Dunia Finance focusses extensively on environmental sustainability, education, social wellness, and education. The company has a high-potential team and always seeks to hire talented individuals who adhere to their values and contribute in dunia’s success stories.

4. Redha Al Ansari Exchange (Dubai)

Redha Al Ansari Exchange is a UAE-based leading global remittance and foreign exchange company. Set up in 1945 by the renowned Al Ansari Family, Redha Al Ansari has several branches across the UAE. It is the pioneer in money transfer and foreign exchange business in the UAE and it caters to a wide range of requirements of its customers across the globe.

The company works with a vision to be recognized as the most trusted brands for all payment solutions and money transactions. Some of the retail and corporate services offered by it includes Labor Guarantees, Foreign Currency, Payment Solutions, Corporate Money Transfers and Personal Remittances. Redha Al Ansari offers numerous job opportunities to people who strive to deliver as per the company’s values.

5. National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD)

National Bank of Abu Dhabi was founded in 1968 by a decree of the Late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the founder of the UAE, The National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) is the leading bank in the Middle East. Known as one of the safest banks in the world, the company has a deep understanding of the world market and the Arab region.

NBAD plays a crucial role of assisting people in facilitating their trade and investments. In 1975, the National Bank opened its first overseas branch in Egypt, followed by its expansion in other locations such as Sudan and Oman in the following years. Today, the organization has a strong presence in almost 19 countries across five continents. Some of the locations where the company has expanded its reach include Libya, France, UK, USA, Brazil, Sudan, Egypt, Switzerland, Bahrain, UAE, Kuwait and Oman.

The company is always seeking to raise its bar and expand internationally to compete at the highest levels. Hence, it always looks out to include talented people in its team of people. NBAD feels proud to have received the ‘Human Resources Development Award’ in the UAE’s banking sector for its unmatched development initiatives and human resources policies.

6. Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB)

Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB) is a reputed full-service commercial bank that offers a broad range of products and services such as corporate banking, foreign exchange, private banking, wealth management and investment banking. It holds a vision to be the No.1 bank of choice in the UAE. Moreover, ADCB’s values of integrity and innovation uniquely position it to emerge successfully as the most valuable bank in the country.

ADCB offers a perfect workplace to fulfill your ambition in a high-performance and diverse culture. Several opportunities abound at ADCB for those who are skilled and dedicated to grow professionally. The company’s staff represents around 62 countries that strengthen its relationships with customers across the globe. Empowering career growth and personal development are the best investments made by the company for its employee.

7. Dubai Financial Market (DFM)

Dubai Financial Market (DFM) is a renowned public institution that operates as a secondary market for trading of units of investment funds and any other financial instruments, bonds issued by the Federal Government or any of the Local Governments, and securities issued by public joint-stock companies. The mission statement of the company includes providing its stakeholders with innovative services in conducting clearing, depository, settlement and trading of securities in a transparent and efficient environment.

DFM always looks to strengthen its team with talented and skilled professionals who can abide by the company’s corporate values of Integrity, Transparency, Efficiency, Confidentiality and Innovation. The career at DFM offers several opportunities to grow and learn.

8. First Gulf Bank (Abu Dhabi)

First Gulf Bank was set up in 1979, First Gulf Bank (FGB) is a leading bank in the UAE. Headquartered in Abu Dhabi, it is recognized as one of the largest equity based banks in the UAE. FGB offers a complete range of financial services to consumer and business sectors through a strong network of branches across the country. It has its representative offices in Hong Kong, London, Seoul and India, while branches in Qatar and Singapore.

FGB has bagged various awards and recognitions, including ‘The Best Bank in the UAE 2014’ and ‘The Best Wealth Management Firm 2014’ at the Banker Middle East Industry Awards. The reputed organization was recently recognized as the ‘Employer of Choice’ at the GCC Best Employer Brand Awards 2014.

9. Dubai Islamic Bank

Dubai Islamic Bank was founded in 1975, Dubai Islamic Bank is not only a name that gave Islamic banking to the world, but continues to maintain a perfect blend of tradition, heritage and excellent services. The customer-centered organization is committed to provide its customers with a comprehensive range of financial solution.

The Dubai Islamic Bank continues to offer its services with a vision to be known as the world’s most progressive Islamic Financial Institution. It is also a recipient of reputed awards such as ‘Islamic Bank of the Year-UAE’ and ‘Most Established Islamic Bank-UAE’ by Business Excellence Awards 2015. The organization’s mission includes maintaining its position as a leading Islamic bank through dedicated customer service and employee engagement. It fosters an inclusive and diverse work environment that offers excellent career prospects for all employees.

10. Rakbank

RAKBANK, popularly known as the National Bank of Ras Al-Khaimah, is one of the most dynamic and fastest growing banks in the UAE. Established in 1976, RAKBANK shifted its focus from corporate banking to small and retail businesses in 2001. It offers a full range of Sharia-compliant business and personal banking services throughout its 35 branches.

RAKBANK’S portfolio of electronic banking solutions includes Mobile Banking, Telephone Banking and Online Banking. The public joint stock company has its headquarter in Ras Al-Khaimah in the UAE. It is a proud member of the UAE Banking Federation (UBF) and 52.76 per cent owned by the Government of Ras Al-Khaimah.

The organization selects its employees based on individual merits and qualifications. Depending on the job role and position you apply for, RAKBANK requests you to undergo a series of tests that are designed to assess the candidate’s suitability for the job.

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