Dubai: India’s largest bank, State Bank of India (SBI), will begin its operation in Saudi Arabia early next year, a Saudi diplomat has said.
“The SBI is going to open its full-fledged branch very soon following the clearance given by Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) recently,” Saudi Ambassador to India Saleh Mohammed Al-Ghamdi was quoted as saying by Arab News.
“Almost all the formalities to facilitate the opening of SBI branch have been completed and the bank is all set to start functioning in Saudi Arabia any moment,” he said.
With more than 9,500 branches and a further 4,000-plus associate bank branches, the SBI has extensive coverage of India and abroad.
Referring to the progressively growing Saudi-Indo relation, Al-Ghamdi said, “The two countries have forged closer relations in all sectors especially in trade and commerce.”
The volume of bilateral trade between the two countries has also gone up to $10 billion, while the volume of joint investment exceeds $3 billion.
He called on the Indian businessmen to take advantage of the strong Saudi economy. “The year 2006 was a year of unprecedented fiscal performance as oil export revenues have been at an all time high of $191 billion, 18% above the previous year’s total which itself was a record,” he said.