Ahmed Saad Ibrahim, Deputy CEO, Sharjah Islamic Bank (SIB) & Saeed Al Amiri, Executive Vice-president and Head of Investment Group, SIB

Enhanced banking potential in a diversified economy

In an interview with Global Platform, Ahmed Saad Ibrahim, Deputy CEO of Sharjah Islamic Bank (SIB), talks about the inevitability of technology’s role in modern banking, as well as the importance of supporting SMEs and start-ups. The UAE’s strong capital base is instrumental to supporting other sectors, such as infrastructure, which will aid its efforts to move away from an oil-based economy; Saeed Al Amiri, Executive Vice-president and Head of Investment Group at SIB, speaks about the growth of Islamic banking and the many financing opportunities in the UAE due to the country’s diversification efforts.


IBRAHIM: The UAE is a very well-diversified economy compared to any other GCC country. The government is working to reduce the dependency on oil and looking to improve the non-oil sectors. 

The government is focusing on diversifying the revenues and the economy, and the contribution of the non-oil sectors to the GDP of the country. With this vision, there will be more focus on the non-oil sectors, and there is a lot of room to grow – and accordingly, a lot of diversification in the banking sector towards these sectors. 

If you look at the banking sector in the UAE in general, we have witnessed during the past two to three years a lot of improvement in the financial indicators in terms of strong liquidity, capital of banks, and very strong profitability and growth ratios.
Islamic banking potential

AMIRI: Islamic banking is growing at a very healthy rate. We are actually now almost 25% of the market, and we will keep growing. People trust Islamic banking because it’s always asset-backed banking, and there is more security and it has a lower risk than conventional banking. 

Ahmed Saad Ibrahim, Deputy CEO, Sharjah Islamic Bank (SIB) & Saeed Al Amiri, Executive Vice-president and Head of Investment Group, SIB

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