Anonymity / confidentiality of beneficial owners
Here is a list of benefits of the UAE relating to SAFE and confidential banking in a rich and economically stable country with huge financial (and oil) reserves.
- 14th largest economy in the world having the 5th largest oil reserves and notably the reserves of the emirate of Abu Dhabi alone amount to over 1 trillion USD$!
- FULL confidentiality for beneficial owners at banks and the authorities and NO information exchange agreements with any other country. Do we disclose UBO details / identity to the authorities? In RAK we do not! (the reason for choosing RAK) in Jebel Ali (Dubai) we do and authorities need bank ref of UBO! To the banks? Yes as a general rule we disclose BUT there are no information exchange agreements
- Solid bank confidentiality with NO exchange of information agreements with any country
- The emirates have not signed exchange of information treaties with any nation, not even the European Union
- Many safe, adequately capitalized and solid banks with 100% government guarantees for the total value of the deposits and strict rules for anonymity / confidentiality.
- Banks which allow the possibility of easy and non time consuming opening procedures and the option possibly of the client not being required to go to the country in person as well as the possibility of opening of a trading account / current account which allow frequent movements and not only investment accounts which are for few movements
- Political and financially powerful and independent countries with no geopolitical risk which can withstand effectively against EU type attacks which are or possible outside Europe and which are not connected, dependant or in the same geographic region with Europe or America
- A country with no currency control restrictions or limitations in the movement of capital and/or possibly without / little restrictions in cash withdrawal (withdrawal 100.000 euro from the till is not unusual)
- Does not appear on any “black list”. It is on the “white list” of the OECD, FATF and EU and is not subject to the sizable pressures that weaker states face only to the extent of keeping of strict internal procedures for control and not exchange of information
- Mature, safe and well capitalised and regulated banking sector
- Existence of strong local banks without reliance from outside for business and preferably no foreign branches outside the Gulf Region
- Banking system that allows 24/7 online transfer capability without limit (!) and capability for large cash withdrawals
- A system that is controlled effectively by wise rulers so that it is not abused by large numbers just to get advantages without having REAL economic and commercial substance and economic contribution to that country
- A system that has solid anti-money laundering regimes with rigorous due diligence procedures (know your client and know your client business) procedures from banks and corporate service providers and discouragement in opening personal or corporate bank accounts with parties that have no real personal or business interest locally
Which bank do you recommend?
Preferable strong / solid local banks for confidentiality with no major EU presence (so they cannot be blackmailed) – foreign banks keep transactions booked in the EU (!) and practically they may exchange information. We can recommend a number of safe banks.
List of Dubai Banks – not exhaustive:
1. National Bank of Ras Al Khaimah (RAKBank)
2. First Gulf Bank
3. Emirates Islamic Bank
4. Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank
5. Dubai Islamic Bank
6. National Bank of Dubai
7. Mashreq Bank
8. Lloyds TSB Bank
9. Commercial Bank of Dubai
10. Al Hilal Bank
11. Noor Islamic Bank
13. Commercial Bank International
15. Emirates Bank International / meBank
16. National Bank of Abu Dhabi
17. Standard Chartered Bank
18. HSBC Bank Middle East
19. National Bank of Sharjah
20. Union National Bank
21. Dubai Bank
22. Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) (formerly ABN Amro)
23. Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank
24. Al Masraf
25. Doha Bank
26. National Bank of Umm Al Quwain
28. Bank of Sharjah
29. United Bank Limited
What do you recommend relating to Bank account opening?
Recommended / are more popular, easy, fast and practical – the incorporation of a new company with bank account and beneficial owner – natural person (not subsidiary of a foreign company – as a second stage changes can be made to accomplish this if we prefer) instead of the opening of an account of a natural person or foreign company, which although not recommended by the Authorities and the banks for risk management purposes, with the introduction of time consuming and high cost procedures.
Current accounts or Private Banking/Brokerage accounts possible with funds transfer facilities and cash withdrawals with NO LIMITS
UAE company (offshore or FZ) – no problem / cheaper / better.
Personal accounts – no problem BUT client must attend bank interview at the UAE.
Foreign company (BVI, Seychelles, Cyprus or Malta) – no problem but time consuming PLUS high cost of document attestations / certifications.