DFM and Citibank Sign Custody Agreement

  • Agreement to further broaden DFM’s institutional investor base
  • Citi to be DPA service provider in local market

Dubai - October 28, 2008 – Dubai Financial Market (DFM) today signed a Depository Participant Agreement (DPA) with Citibank. The agreement will enable Citibank to provide custody of DFM-listed securities to institutional and international clients, thus helping broaden the exchange’s investor base.

With the signing of the new DPA, Citibank joins other leading financial institutions that have already signed similar agreements with DFM to provide sophisticated depository participant services to local, regional and global investors.

The signing ceremony was attended by Essa Kazim, Chairman of DFM, and Murali Subramanian, Head of Citi’s Global Transaction Services in the Middle East and North Africa, and other senior officials from DFM and Citibank.

Commenting on the agreement, Kazim said: "Depository participant services are an essential element in the process of securities investment, and we are keen to constantly keep abreast of the different segments of investor’s needs. DFM seeks to provide more options for investors via a set of the best local and global banking institutions, and will work continuously to strengthen these services through cooperation with more such prestigious banks."

By acting as a depository participant, banks offer custodial services in the market for DFM-listed securities. These services include, but are not limited to: account management, the protection of client assets, settlement of securities activity, handling post-trade issues, the collection and payment of dividends and interest, and the processing of corporate action activities in the market.

Kazim added: "The constant upgrading of the quality of services provided by the exchange demonstrates DFM’s firm and sustained commitment to excellence. This agreement with Citibank complements the pioneering role of DFM in the financial sector, and embodies DFM’s strategy of providing the best services and products that meet the evolving and expanding needs of investors."

Mohammed Al-Shroogi, Managing Director for the Middle East and Chief Executive Officer for Citi in the UAE, said: "The Dubai Financial Market has grown into a major bourse in the region during the past few years, in line with Dubai’s steady evolution into the region's pre-eminent financial market. Providing Direct Custody and Clearing (DCC) services to the investors at DFM is an integral part of Citi’s ambitious regional expansion plan. We have recently embarked on a strategy to deliver locally our Securities and Funds Services capabilities within the region, while we continue to offer clients in the Middle East our full suite of global financial services and customize financial solutions that meet their growing needs."

Dubai Financial Market, the first regional bourse to be converted into a public joint stock company, continues to upgrade the quality of services provided to investors through cooperation with a wide range of world-renowned financial institutions.

Citi has been present in the Arab World for nearly fifty years and continues to view the region as critical to its global franchise. It is currently present in ten Arab countries including Egypt, UAE, Lebanon, Jordan, Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria, Bahrain, Qatar and Kuwait.

Citi’s Global Transaction Services supports more than 65,000 clients across its global network. As of the third quarter of 2008, it held on average $273 billion in liability balances under administration, and approaching $11.9 trillion in assets under custody and trust. Citi’s Treasury and Trade Solutions division of Global Transaction Services offers integrated cash management and trade solutions to meet the evolving needs of corporate, public sector and financial institution clients in over 140 countries.

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About Dubai Financial Market:
Dubai Financial Market (DFM) was established as a public institution having its own independent corporate body. DFM operates as a secondary market for the trading of securities issued by public shareholding companies, bonds issued by the federal Government or any of the local Governments and public institutions in the country, units of investment funds and any other financial instruments, local or foreign, which are accepted by the market. The DFM commenced operations on March 26, 2000. Following its initial public offering in November 2006, when DFM offered 1.6 billion shares, representing 20 per cent of its paid-up capital of AED 8 billion, DFM became a public joint stock company. Following the IPO, the Government of Dubai retained the remaining 80 per cent of DFM Company.

About Citi
Citi, the leading global financial services company, has some 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 100 countries, providing consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, and wealth management. Citi’s major brands include Citibank, CitiFinancial, Primerica, Smith Barney and Banamex. Additional information may be found at www.citigroup.com or www.citi.com www.citigroup.com or www.citi.com.