DUBAI- Emirates NBD has received permission from Saudi Arabia to open twenty more branches in the country, the bank said, as Dubai's biggest bank eyes expansion in the Arab world's biggest economy.

Currently Emirates NBD has four branches in Saudi Arabia - two in Riyadh, one in Jeddah and one in the eastern province of Khobar.

"Emirates NBD is honoured to have been given permission to open twenty more branches in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia," Hesham Abdulla Al Qassim, the bank's vice chairman, said in a statement.

The lender's bigger UAE rival First Abu Dhabi Bank also launched commercial banking operations in Saudi Arabia this year.

(Reporting by Saeed Azhar. Editing by Davide Barbuscia) ((; +971 44536787; Reuters Messaging: