Dubai, United Arab Emirates: Emirates Development Bank (EDB), a key financial engine for the economic development and industrial advancement of the nation, and Emirates Islamic, one of the leading Islamic financial institutions in the UAE have announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to collaborate on a joint credit guarantee scheme supporting the financial inclusion of small-to-medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in the UAE.

Emirates Islamic is the 11th commercial bank to join EDB’s credit guarantee scheme platform offering favourable financing solutions to SMEs. Under the partnership agreement, EDB will guarantee 50% of the finance facility extended to eligible SMEs by Emirates Islamic. Both banks will also collaborate to identify further opportunities to enhance their banking solutions.

Ahmed Mohamed Al Naqbi, Chief Executive Officer at Emirates Development Bank said: “EDB remains committed to enhancing our nation’s SME ecosystem and supporting the sustainable economic development of the nation, specifically the five key priority sectors. We are pleased to welcome Emirates Islamic to our expanding group of commercial bank partners with the shared goal of facilitating access to financing for SMEs contributing to the UAE’s non-oil GDP.

Salah Mohammed Amin, Chief Executive Officer at Emirates Islamic said: “As a home-grown Islamic financial institution, supporting the UAE's SME sector is a top priority for Emirates Islamic and we are proud to be partnering with EDB. This reflects our shared commitment to supporting the growth of the segment in the UAE, as we strive to enhance the overall SME business ecosystem and make financing more accessible.”

He added “SMEs are a key driver of Emirates Islamic’s growth strategy and we offer a wide range of business banking products and services tailored to meet the needs of companies in this critical sector.” 

As the UAE’s development bank, EDB’s mandate includes the provision of AED 30 billion in financing towards the development of the UAE economy in five strategic sectors by 2026, of which AED 5 million are to be allocated through credit guarantee schemes.

In FY 2022 EDB approved AED 6.1 billion in financing, representing a 673% increase over the previous year. A total of AED 1.8 billion in financing was approved to SMEs for FY 2022, representing a 387% increase over FY 2021 and a 45% increase over previous quarter. This comprised AED 1.2 billion of direct financing and AED 611 million of indirect financing through EDB’s credit guarantee scheme with partner commercial banks.


About Emirates Development Bank

Emirates Development Bank [EDB] the UAE’s development bank, is a key financial engine for the economic development and industrial advancement of the UAE. EDB provides financial and non-financial support to businesses of all sizes from start-ups, SMEs to corporates driving economic competitiveness across five strategic priority sectors: advanced technology, food security, healthcare, renewables, and manufacturing. EDB was established under Federal Law by Decree No. 07 of 2011 issued by the late Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan; and became operational in June 2015.

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About Emirates Islamic:

Emirates Islamic (DFM: EIB), part of Emirates NBD Group, is one of the fastest growing Islamic banks in the UAE. Established in 2004 as Emirates Islamic Bank, the bank has established itself as a major player in the highly competitive financial services sector in the UAE.

Emirates Islamic offers a comprehensive range of Shariah-compliant products and services across the Personal, Business and Corporate banking spectrum with a network of 42 branches and 209 ATMs/CDMs across the UAE. In the fast-growing area of online and mobile banking, the bank is an innovator, being the first Islamic bank in the UAE to launch a mobile banking app and offer Apple Pay, as well as being the first Islamic bank in the world to launch Chat Banking services for customers via WhatsApp.

Emirates Islamic has consistently received local and international awards, in recognition of its strong record of performance and innovation in banking. Emirates Islamic won recognition in 2022 for its financial performance, innovative products and customer experience. The bank won three awards at the World Finance Islamic Finance Awards - namely “Best Islamic Bank in UAE”; “Best Islamic Bank in Customer Experience, UAE” and “Best Credit Card in UAE” for its Etihad Guest Credit Cards - a range of exclusive, co-branded credit cards with Etihad Airways. The bank was also named ‘Best Islamic Bank for SMEs’ at the MEA Finance Awards, recognised for its innovative proposition for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and its status as a preferred bank for entrepreneurs seeking Shariah -compliant products and services for their businesses. Emirates Islamic was named the UAE’s most valuable Islamic banking brand and MENA’s sixth most valuable Islamic banking brand, with a value of USD 325 million, in The Banker’s 2022 brand valuation.

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