The Central Bank of the UAE (CBUAE) on Thursday revoked the license of Russia's MTS bank branch in Abu Dhabi.

The apex bank said in a statement that it will wind down MTS bank's Abu Dhabi operations within six months from date from the date of the decision.

MTS Bank, secured a licence in 2022 to operate in the UAE.

This decision comes after considering the available options regarding the new status of the MTS bank, and taking into account the sanctions risks associated with the bank after the designation, the CBUAE statement said.

During the winding down, the branch will be prohibited from opening new accounts and conducting transactions, except for clearing prior obligations. "The bank’s use of Central Bank’s payment systems will be restricted to this purpose only," the statement noted.

The US and Britain added several Russian banks including MTS to their sanctions list in February, while the European Union cut off more banks from the SWIFT global payments system.

(Writing by Seban Scaria; editing by Daniel Luiz)