HSBC Bank Middle East

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HSBC Bank Middle East Limited
Company typeSubsidiary
IndustryFinance and Insurance
Founded1889; 135 years ago (1889)
HeadquartersDubai, UAE
Key people
Martin Tricaud, Deputy Chairman and CEO

Abdul Hakeem Mostafawi, CEO of HSBC Qatar

Jody Sanderson, Head of Global Banking, GCC ex-UAE

Osama Ali, Head of Global Banking Qatar
ProductsFinancial services (UAE) (Egypt) (Qatar) (Oman) (Israel) (Kuwait)

HSBC Bank Middle East Limited (Arabic: إتش إس بي سي الشرق الأوسط) is the largest and most widely represented international bank in the Middle East.


The Imperial Bank of Persia (Persian: بانک شاهنشاهی ایران; Bank-e Šâhanšâhi-ye Irân) was a British bank that operated as the state bank and bank of issue in Iran (formerly known as Persia until 1935), between 1889 and 1929. It was established in 1889 with a concession from the Persian government to Baron Julius De Reuter (born Israel Beer Josaphat), a German Jewish banker and businessman who later became a Christian and a British subject.[1]

The bank was the first modern bank in Iran and introduced European banking ideas to a country in which they were previously unknown. The legal centre of the bank was in London and whilst it was subject to British law, its activities were based in Tehran. It also had operations in other Middle Eastern countries.[citation needed]

In 1952, the bank abandoned the Iranian market and it was later renamed British Bank of the Middle East (BBME).[2]

In 1959, BBME was acquired by The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited.[citation needed] In 1994, the bank's head office was moved to Jersey, and subsequently changed its name to HSBC Bank Middle East (HBME) in 1999.[citation needed]

In June 2016, the bank transferred its place of incorporation and head office from Jersey to Dubai International Financial Centre, Dubai, UAE.[3][4][5]

Middle East banking[edit]

HSBC has maintained its presence in Beirut, Lebanon ever since 1946, thus the first in the Middle East.

HBME is regulated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority, but remains locally regulated in each of the countries in which it operates by the country's Central Bank and its other regulators.[3]

HSBC maintains a network of offices in various countries in the Middle East. Operations of the group in the Middle East are under this subsidiary.


HSBC has a presence in Algeria since August 2008 when HSBC France opened a registered office and branch in Algiers.

In 2009, HSBC France transferred the supervision of the bank to HBME.[6] The bank has two branches located at the cities of Algiers (head office) and Oran. It offers banking products and services for Corporate, as well as Retail Banking customers.[7]


HSBC has a presence in Bahrain since 1944 when the Imperial Bank Of Persia opened a branch.[8]

The bank's network in Bahrain extends to three locations, including an offshore banking unit. It is represented by HSBC Middle East Limited (HBME) and is the largest foreign bank in Bahrain. The bank has branches, in Manama, Adliya, and Seef, as well as a network of ATMs at 20 different locations.

HSBC provides a range of banking services for both corporate and retail banking customers in Bahrain.[8]


British Bank of the Middle East opened a branch in 1975 that it closed in 1986, having failed to adapt itself to the market.[9]


HSBC Bank Egypt was established in 1982 as Hongkong Egyptian Bank with 40% HSBC ownership. In January 1994, the bank was renamed Egyptian British Bank under the same shareholding structure. The bank took the name HSBC Bank Egypt in April 2001 following an increase in shareholding by the HSBC Group's from 40% to 94.5% of its issued share capital.


HSBC office at Rothschild Boulevard in Tel Aviv.

HSBC started operations in Israel with a full banking license since 2001, headquartered at Ramat Gan.[10] HSBC in Palestine currently offers Commercial banking and Private banking through HSBC Private Bank in Switzerland.[citation needed]


British Bank of the Middle East had established itself in Jordan in 1949. At one point it had a branch in Jordanian Jerusalem, before the Israeli occupation of east Jerusalem after the war of 1967.

In 2013, HSBC Jordan's banking business consisted of four branches with gross assets of approximately $1.2 billion.

On 19 June 2014, Arab Jordan Investment Bank (AJIB) acquired HSBC Jordan. Almost all employees were expected to transfer to AJIB.[11][12]


HSBC first received the license to operate in Kuwait as the Imperial Bank of Persia in 1942, it renamed itself to BBME in 1952. It left the country in 1971 following the nationalisation of all foreign bank operations.[13][14]

The bank formally reestablished a presence in Kuwait in October 2005 after receiving a license by Kuwait's Council Of Ministers.[15]

The bank has a branch located in AlHamra Tower, in Kuwait City, offering Corporate banking, Investment banking, Private banking and Treasury services.


HSBC has been operating in Lebanon since 1946. It maintained a network of four offices in St. Georges Bay, Dora, Achrafieh and Ras Beirut which is supported by telephone and internet banking services. On 16 November 2016, HSBC announced the sale of its Corporate, Retail Banking and Wealth Management business to BLOM Bank.[16][17] The sale was completed on 13 June 2017.[18] All employees were transferred to BLOM Bank S.A.L. as part of the agreement.[19]


HSBC Bank Oman S.A.O.G has been present in the Sultanate since 1948, and for two decades it was the only bank operating in the country. The bank assisted in the issuance of the first Omani currency in 1970.[20] It provides a wide range of banking services for both corporate and retail banking customers. In recent years HSBC Oman has expanded to over 90 branches and in addition has a full-service trading operation, private banking operation, and a custodial service for the Muscat Securities Market. In 2012, HSBC merged with Oman International Bank and by the end of 2012 all OIB branches had been rebranded as HSBC Bank Oman S.A.O.G.[21][22][needs update]

The bank has several dedicated 'Premier' Customer Service Centres in Madinat al Sultan Qaboos and Azaiba, in addition to dedicated service areas in certain main branches such as Qurum and Ruwi.

HSBC Bank Oman board members:[20]

  • Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles (Chairman)
  • Waleed Omar Al Zawawi (Deputy Chairman)
  • Dr. Juma Ali Juma Al Juma (Senior Independent Director)
  • Aimen Ahmed Sultan Al Hosni
  • Paul Joseph Lawrence
  • Christine Jane Lynch
  • Abdulfattah Sharaf


HSBC started its operations in Pakistan in 1982 with limited presence in three major cities. HSBC's offices in Pakistan were operated by The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation initially. In 2008, The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation merged its Pakistan banking business with HSBC Bank Middle East Limited.[23] Over the course of next 4 year, it expanded its operations to all major cities of Pakistan and operated as a full-service bank. At its peak, it had 12 offices, 24/7 telephone call centre, and HSBC Premier. The bank also offered NRP (Non-Resident Pakistani) services. Out of its branches, four were located in Karachi, two each in Lahore and Islamabad, and one each in Rawalpindi, Faisalabad, Sialkot and Multan. All the cities served also offered Premier Centres.

On 9 May 2014, HSBC Bank Middle East (HBME) entered into an agreement to sell its banking business in Pakistan to Meezan Bank, citing strategy of scaling back its operations in markets with limited scale.[24] The transaction, after regulatory and other customary approvals, completed on 14 October 2014.[25] All employees in the business were offered positions with Meezan upon completion.

Palestinian Territories[edit]

HSBC headquarters in Ramallah in August 2010, it was closed in December 2015.

HSBC operated in the Palestinian Territories until 31 December 2015. All operations of HSBC, including personal and commercial banking and headquarters in Ramallah, were closed by 31 December 2015.[26]


HSBC has been present in Qatar since 1954.[27] The bank offers a full range of cross-border banking products and services including Retail Banking, Commercial and Global Banking, Wealth Management and Offshore banking. HSBC is the largest foreign bank in Qatar and has three branches in Doha, located at Airport Road, City Center and Salwa, as well as a network of ATMs at 11 locations.

United Arab Emirates[edit]

The United Arab Emirates represents a key part of HSBC's business, with 24 branches and offices. It is also the location of HSBC's regional head office.[3]

Board of directors (as of 2020)[edit]


On 22 February 2021, the HSBC Group announced a change to its senior management team in the Middle East, North Africa and Turkey region.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Burrell, R. M. (October 1988). "Geoffrey Jones: The history of the British Bank of the Middle East. 2 vols. I: Banking and empire in Iran. II: Banking and oil. xxiv, 418 pp.; xxi, 359 pp., 32 plates. Cambridge, etc.: Cambridge University Press, 1986, 1987. £40, $75; £40, $75". Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies. 51 (3): 571–573. doi:10.1017/S0041977X00116830. ISSN 1474-0699.
  2. ^ Pamuk, Sevket (December 1988). "The History of the British Bank of the Middle East. By Geoffrey Jones. Vol. 1: Banking and Empire in Iran. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1986. Pp. xxiv, 418. $75.00. Vol. 2: Banking and Oil. 1987. Pp. xxi, 359. $70.00". The Journal of Economic History. 48 (4): 953–954. doi:10.1017/S0022050700006975. ISSN 1471-6372. S2CID 153791038.
  3. ^ a b c "HSBC in the UAE - About HSBC | HSBC UAE". Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  4. ^ "HSBC Middle East completes move to Dubai International Financial Centre". The National. 3 July 2016. Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  5. ^ "HSBC Middle East completes transfer from Jersey to Dubai's DIFC". Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  6. ^ "HSBC report for investors" (PDF). HSBC. Retrieved 2 July 2020.
  7. ^ "HSBC in Algeria - About HSBC | HSBC Algeria". Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  8. ^ a b "HSBC in Bahrain - About HSBC | HSBC in Bahrain". Retrieved 2020-07-03.
  9. ^ Alwan and Mibrathi (2000), p.20.
  10. ^ "HSBC in Israel - About HSBC | HSBC Israel".
  11. ^ Hainey, Raymond (21 January 2014). "HSBC sells off Jordan banking unit | The Royal Gazette:Bermuda Business". The Royal Gazette. Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  12. ^ "HSBC sells its business in Jordan" (PDF). HSBC. Retrieved 2 July 2020.
  13. ^ "HSBC begins operations in Kuwait". 3 October 2005. Retrieved 2020-07-03.
  14. ^ "HSBC in Kuwait - About HSBC | HSBC Kuwait". Retrieved 2020-07-03.
  15. ^ "HSBC set to end 30-year absence from Kuwait". 10 March 2005. Retrieved 2020-07-03.
  16. ^ "HSBC sells Lebanese business to BLOM Bank". Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  17. ^ "HSBC sells its business in Lebanon" (PDF). HSBC. Retrieved 2 July 2020.
  18. ^ "Lebanon's Blom Bank completes acquisition of HSBC Lebanon unit". Reuters UK. 2017-06-18. Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  19. ^ "BLOM BANK S.A.L. acquires HSBC Bank Middle East Limited – Lebanon". Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  20. ^ a b "HSBC in Oman - About HSBC | HSBC Oman". Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  21. ^ "HSBC Bank Oman merger with OIB" (PDF). HSBC. Retrieved 2 July 2020.
  22. ^ "HSBC Oman, Oman International Bank sign agreement on merger". 19 April 2012. Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  23. ^ "SBP issues licence to HSBC Bank Middle East". DAWN.COM. 2008-05-18. Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  24. ^ "HSBC Pakistan agreement with Meezan". HSBC. Retrieved 2 July 2020.
  25. ^ "Meezan Bank acquires HSBC | Pakistan Today". 21 October 2014. Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  26. ^ "HSBC in the Palestinian Territories - About HSBC".
  27. ^ "HSBC in Qatar - About HSBC | HSBC Qatar". Retrieved 2020-07-02.
  28. ^ "HSBC Bank Middle East Limited Annual Report and Accounts 2020" (PDF). HSBC. 24 April 2021.


  • Alwan, Daoud Aboubakern, and Yohanis Mibrathu (2000) Historical Dictionary of Djibouti. (Scarecrow Press). ISBN 9780810838734

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