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SBI set to launch operations in Jeddah

DUBAI: State Bank of India (SBI) is set to commence operations in Saudi Arabia in the next four to six weeks, a senior bank official has said.

Hemant G. Contractor, Managing Director and Group Executive (international banking), said he had reviewed the set up with the team and they all set to go.

Mr. Contractor was in Saudi Arabia with a team of top officials to discuss and facilitate all preparatory aspects prior to the launch of the branch in Jeddah.

“We will start soon after completion of few regulatory requirements. This is expected in the next few weeks. So we will commence operations by next month,” he was quoted by Arab News as saying.

Mr. Contractor added: “We have completed all other procedural requirements and all necessary infrastructure is in place. We are ready in all aspects to launch operations in Jeddah.” He was confident that SBI would make an impact in the country despite some big players in the sector. “The Saudi market is a growth driver for the entire GCC, the Kingdom is host to a great number of Indian expatriates and India and Saudi Arabia have strong and extensive links in trade and commerce. All these are strong reasons for us to be here,” he said.

Slew of services

“Also once we begin operations, the Jeddah branch will provide a slew of services on both sides of the balance sheet and beyond balance sheet as well,” Mr. Contractor added.

Project finance, syndication, SME lending, trade finance, car loan and personal loan will be among the target products for the bank while electronic remittance, NRI services will be another focus area. — PTI

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