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ICBC Middle East 2012 Profit Rises 69% on Fee, Operating Income

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Feb. 23 (Bloomberg) -- Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Middle East, a regional unit of the world’s largest lender by market value, said 2012 pretax profit increased 69 percent because of higher operating and fee income.

Profit for the period surged to $54 million, while operating income rose 47 percent to $72 million from a year earlier, the bank said in an e-mailed statement today. Total assets increased 29 percent to $3.96 billion as of Dec. 31, the Beijing-based bank said.

“We strengthened our relationships with key government entities, private institutions and financial institutions across the region,” Tian Zhiping, chief executive officer of ICBC’s Middle Eastern business, said in the statement. “We are also providing project financing to the increasing number of Chinese businesses operating in the Middle East.”

The bank plans to develop investment banking and asset management services in the region and hopes to open branches this year in Kuwait and the Saudi capital, Riyadh, this year, he said.

ICBC said its Middle Eastern unit conducted $2.25 billion of renminbi transactions in the interbank money market. Dollar transactions in the interbank money market for the bank surged to $11.1 billion last year from $1.35 billion in the earlier period, it said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Glen Carey in Riyadh at gcarey8@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew J. Barden at barden@bloomberg.net

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