British Bank of the Middle East


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British Bank of the Middle East

 

a British joint-stock bank founded as the Imperial Bank of Persia in 1889 under a concession granted by the shah of Iran for a period of 60 years.

Until 1930 the bank had the exclusive right to issue bank notes in Iran and functioned as a central bank. In 1935 its name was changed to the Imperial Bank of Iran. The bank’s concession expired in August 1949; since its operations had already expanded beyond the borders of Iran, the bank became the British Bank of Iran and the Middle East. It worked with the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company until 1952, when it was no longer allowed to operate in Iran. In July 1952 it was reorganized as the British Bank of the Middle East.

In January 1960 the Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation acquired 99.5 percent of the bank’s shares, but the bank continued to function under its old name. In July 1973 the entire capital of the bank was transferred to the parent corporation. The British Bank of the Middle East, whose main headquarters is in London, has 66 branches (primarily in countries of the Middle East and North Africa) and two subsidiary banks. At the end of 1976 the bank had total assets of £1,571 million, capital and reserves of £42 million, current accounts and deposits of £1,413 million, and loans and discounted bills of £1,112 million.

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The British Bank of the Middle East opened branches in Baku, Azerbaijan, and Seeb, Oman.
The British Bank of the Middle East reported an attributable profit of 32 million pounds, compared with 31 million pounds for the first half of 1995, an increase of 1 million pounds, or 3 per cent.
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The British Bank of the Middle East reported an attributable profit of P58 million, compared with P51 million for 1994, an increase of P7 million, or 14 percent.
The British Bank of the Middle East reported an attributable profit of 51 million pounds, compared with 61 million pounds for 1993, in which year it benefitted from the results of its then associate, The Saudi British Bank.

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