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NBAD to expand wealth management portfolio

National Bank of Abu Dhabi plans to expand its wealth management business in Africa and Asia, as it looks to maintain strong growth at a time when its home region is being impacted by political and economic uncertainty. The bank has been focusing on growing its fee-paying businesses such as wealth management in recent quarters as it aims to offset high levels of competition in traditional banking product lines in the UAE and diversify its product offering into areas previously dominated by international lenders. Gry Dugan, NBAD’s global chief investment officer said the bank’s diversification strategy should help to offset the recent challenges of weaker local markets. The wealth management strategy matches the bank’s wider aim of expanding through eight banking hubs it wants to set up in major cities from West Africa to China. The bank plans to open in July its first office in India, in Mumbai. Dugan said India is also one of the markets where NBAD is looking to deploy its investors’ capital, as part of a wider weighting increase towards markets in Asia and Europe. China will not be on the bank’s radar though, given its huge debt, the defaulting on bonds by banks and other warning signs, according to Dugan.

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