UAE Central Bank issues low-risk regulations for specialised banks

Waheed Abbas/Dubai
Filed on May 1, 2021

Sets Dh300m minimum paid-up capital requirement

The Central Bank of the UAE (CBUAE) has issued new regulations for specialised banks to operate according to a low credit risk model.

Specialised banks’ activities involve serving the local community, such as account opening, card issuance, and retail and wholesale lending. In the UAE, specialised banks are permitted to provide their services to nationals and residents only.

The regulation sets a minimum paid-up capital requirement of Dh300 million that specialised banks must maintain and a risk-based capital adequacy requirement that they should continuously adhere to.

It also sets the total consolidated assets of specialised banks which should not exceed Dh25 billion.

The Central Bank said specialised banks are allowed to conduct their activities in dirham only and operate according to a low credit risk model. They can be established either as a conventional specialised bank without Islamic windows, or as an Islamic specialised bank.

The apex bank stressed on the importance of specialised banks’ compliance with all regulations, standards, and notices issued for the banking sector, except where there are specific provisions contained in the new regulation which apply to specialised banks only.

The new regulation came into effect on April 30, 2021, it said.

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