Discover the foreign banks in the UAE that contribute to its booming real estate market.

Banking in the UAE

The financial landscape in the UAE is particularly interesting for foreign investors and international companies due to favorable income tax conditions and no taxation obligations on any form of personal income. The skyrocketing popularity of the Dubai and Abu Dhabi real estate markets are drawing in companies and individuals alike with their abundant and profitable investment opportunities. Whether it’s transaction services, wealth management, or any kind of loan, both individuals and corporations need to go through banks in the UAE in order to transact their business or purchase. This created the need for stable and versatile banking options in the UAE, so many national as well as international banks were established in order to satisfy this requirement.

The UAE banking sector is heavily regulated by the Central Bank of the UAE. Many of the current foreign banks were licensed in the UAE before the Central Bank was established in 1980, however, all banks, both foreign and domestic, must comply with the rules and regulations set by the Central Bank in order to operate in the country. Maximum fees and safety regulations, among other rules, are set by the Central Bank, but each bank can set its own minimum balances and loan requirements. These international banks enjoy certain benefits from the UAE government as they are allowed to have 100% foreign ownership and are freed from any taxes on their corporate income for a period of 50 years. This article provides you with a list of all foreign banks operating in the UAE under the Central Bank regulations and confirms whether they offer mortgage services or not.

Foreign banks in the UAE

The UAE Central Bank permits the foreign banks below to conduct transactional and banking services as well as offer credit and loans to their customers. There are other financial companies in the UAE offering brokering, money transfer, insurance, and currency exchange services that are not included in this list. Some of these banks specialize in corporate loans, wealth management, and investment banking while others cover both companies as well as individuals and their private banking needs. Below is a list of foreign banks in the UAE which specialize in offering mortgage loans to individuals and companies among other standard banking and transactional services. All the banks are licensed as foreign banks, except Natwest Markets Plc which is licensed as a foreign retail bank.
Institution name License category Head office Loan type Residency
HSBC Bank Middle East Limited Conventional Retail Dubai Mortgages residents & non residents
Standard Chartered Bank Conventional Retail Dubai Mortgages residents
United Bank Ltd. Conventional Retail Dubai Mortgages residents & non residents
Al Ahli Bank of Kuwait Conventional Retail Dubai Mortgages residents
Arab Bank PLC Conventional Retail Abu Dhabi Mortgages residents & non residents*
Natwest Markets Plc Conventional Retail Dubai Mortgages residents & non residents
Rafidain Bank Conventional Retail Abu Dhabi Mortgages residents & non residents
Bank of Baroda Conventional Retail Dubai Mortgages residents**
Habib Bank A.G Zurich Conventional Retail Dubai Mortgage & commercial loans residents & non residents
El Nilein Bank Islamic Retail Abu Dhabi Mortgages residents
Doha Bank Conventional Retail Dubai Corporate mortgages UAE companies
The Saudi National Bank Conventional Retail Dubai Islamic mortgages Saudi nationals
National Bank of Kuwait Conventional Retail Dubai International mortgages residents & non residents
Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Conventional Wholesale Abu Dhabi Corporate mortgages UAE companies and Chinese nationals
Barclays Bank PLC Conventional Wholesale Dubai International mortgages residents & non residents
MCB Bank Limited Conventional Wholesale Dubai Mortgages Non-resident Pakistanis
Bank AlFalah Limited Conventional Wholesale Dubai Corporate Mortgages UAE companies
* only for Jordanian, Lebanese and Palestinian non-UAE residents
** for persons of Indian origin (PIO / OCI) residing in UAE for last 2 years

Below is a list of foreign banks in the UAE which, in addition to standard transactional and banking services, offer consumer and business loans as well as wealth management to their customers, but don’t mention mortgages or home loans among their products. All the banks below are licensed as foreign banks.
Institution name License category Head office Loan type
CitiBank N.A. Conventional Retail Dubai Business loans
Habib Bank Ltd. Conventional Retail Dubai Business loans
Bank Saderat Iran Conventional Retail Dubai Personal loans
Bank Melli Iran Conventional Retail Dubai Personal & business loans
Arab African International Bank Conventional Retail Dubai Personal & business loans
Banque Misr Conventional Retail Dubai Personal & business loans
BNP Paribas Conventional Retail Abu Dhabi Personal & business loans
Al Khaliji (France) S. A. Conventional Retail Dubai /
Janata Bank Limited Conventional Retail Abu Dhabi Personal & business loans
Banque Banorient France Conventional Retail Dubai /
Credit Agricole-Corporate and Investment Bank Conventional Retail Dubai Business loans
National Bank of Oman S.A.O.G. Conventional Retail Abu Dhabi Personal & business loans
National Bank of Bahrain Conventional Retail Abu Dhabi Business loans
Deutsche Bank AG Conventional Wholesale Abu Dhabi Business loans
KEB Hana Bank Conventional Wholesale Abu Dhabi Business loans
Bank of China Limited Conventional Wholesale Abu Dhabi Personal & business loans
Gulf International Bank Conventional Wholesale Abu Dhabi Business loans
Intesa Sanpaolo S.P.A Conventional Wholesale Abu Dhabi Business loans
Agricultural Bank of China Ltd. Conventional Wholesale Dubai Business loans
BOK International Bank Islamic Retail Abu Dhabi Business loans

To sum up

Now that you’ve had an overview of all the international banks in the UAE and their main products and services, you can start to get an idea of how dynamic and expansive the financial sector in the Emirates truly is. Examining all these banks and their services in detail takes a lot of time and patience, so if you are in need of finding a reliable and trustworthy bank for your personal or corporate needs there is a better way of finding the right one instead of analyzing each one individually. If you are looking for a mortgage loan for your future investment or home, you can go through a broker like Kredium. Contact our experts or register on our website and get a free consultation and guidance through the entire process.

We help UAE nationals, expats and non-residents alike find the best mortgage offers out there. If you are looking for a property for your next investment or your new home, feel free to browse our expanding portfolio of
over 5000 properties in Dubai. We have connections with all the major developers. If you have a budget or a price range in mind, use our detailed mortgage calculator to plan out your installments, and estimate your loan amount, additional costs, as well as projected rental profit in advance before you move forward with your purchase. Furthermore, you can continue to familiarize yourself with the real estate market by learning about the national banks in the UAE, the Dubai Land Department (DLD), and the entire home-buying process.
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UAE international banks

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Foreign banks in the UAE

Non-resident mortgage loans

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International lenders in the UAE

Corporate lenders in the UAE