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ICDOpens Dubai Office Launching First Money Market Fund Trading And Risk Management Operations In The Middle East

Dubai, United Arab Emirates – December14, 2011 – ICD Middle East(ICD) today commenced operations in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE), the world’s first money market fund (MMF)portal licensed to arrange credit and deals in investments in the Middle East by the Dubai Financial Service Authority (DFSA). ICD’s new offices in the Dubai International Financial Centreset the stage for expanded global MMF trading and risk management in a new era of investing for this booming region.ICD Middle East is a subsidiary of Institutional Cash Distributors Limited.

Dubai is the latest in a series of successes for ICD,the trading and risk management company that specializes in people, products and processes for corporate treasury. In 2003, ICD launched one of the original MMF trading portals in the United States. In 2005, ICDlaunched the first portal in the European market with the opening of trade desks and sales offices in London under England’s Financial Services Authority by 2010. ICD is the only web-based, cash-trading portal in Canada with securities registrations in Ontario, British Columbia, Quebec and Alberta.Of note, ICD was also first-to-market with thecategory-defining money market fund exposure analytics application, Transparency Plus® in July 2010.

ICD’s new strategic UAE base is managed by ICD’s EVP, John Bennie, who most recently led ICD’sEuropean business development and the company’s Global Trade Desk inLondon.  Ed Baldry, ICD’s CEO Europe commented, “John Bennie has developed excellent relationships in the Middle East market place over recent years. We are excited about his completecommitmentto the region,” continued Baldry, “This is where we expect great future growthin money market funds and ICD is focused onfacilitating the expansion.”

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ahlibank lays the foundation stone for its new Head office

Muscat,13 December, 2011: ahlibank, one of the fastest growing banks in the Sultanate with assets over 898 millions Rials, laid the foundation stone of its new head office in Wattayah on Tuesday the 13th of December 2011,under the auspices of  H. E  Yahya bin Said bin Abdullah Al Jabry, Chairman of Duqm Special Economic zone.  The official ceremony was also attended by high ranking officials from CBO and the CMA as well as  the Chairman  of ahlibank Mr. Hamdan Al Hinai along with other members of the Board of Directors & Senior management of the bank.

Speaking on the need for a new head office building, Abdul Aziz AL Balushi, Chief Executive officer, ahlibank  said "ahlibank growth strategy in Oman hinges on three pillars: people, technology and infrastructure. As the Bank has grown over the years, we have tried to employ, nurture and partner with some of the finest Omani talent in the country. We believe that our Technology orientation has also been amongst the best in the region, as we believe, technology allows us to build and offer a truly differentiated banking experience to our customers. Our third pillar of growth is infrastructure - and this is what we hope to address through our move to a new head office building, that is custom-designed to substantially improve efficiencies and reduce administrative expenses."

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BankMuscat wins Best Asset Manager in Oman award

MUSCAT, 13 December 2011 – BankMuscat Asset Management has won the Best Asset Manager in Oman Award by Global Investor. The award recognizes the greatest contributions to asset management and asset servicing over the last 12 months.

Ali Said Ali, AGM – Asset Management and Private Banking, said: “BankMuscat Asset Management is honored to win the award which endorses the performance of various funds under its mandate and also the ability of the fund manager, proven in challenging situations. This reflects the consistency of performance of the funds and the strategies adopted BankMuscat Asset Management which has cemented its reputation in a very tough market.”

Ali Said Ali added: “BankMuscat enjoys proven expertise in asset management. The Bank’s performance has been lauded by the global banking community for several years and we are delighted to receive yet another prestigious endorsement from Global Investor. A keen perception of customer requirements enables the Bank to remain focused on developing products and services in line with the current and emerging needs.”

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BankMuscat spotlights healthy lifestyle as large crowd throngs World Walking Day

MUSCAT, 12 December 2011 – Thousands of health enthusiasts ranging from all walks of life, including children, women and youth representing all nationalities, turned out in large numbers at the World Walking Day hosted by BankMuscat in partnership with the international Sport for All under the patronage of His Highness Sayyid Taimur bin Assad bin Tariq Al Said at Al Sahwa Gardens, Seeb on Monday (12 December).

A festive mood prevailed at the park as the participants united in the walk for healthy living and to make a difference in the lives of people across the world. Present on the occasion were senior government and private sector representatives. The celebration included entertainment and attractive prizes to the public participating in the walk.

Adding to the festivities, BankMuscat also hosted al Mazyona draws for monthly, weekly and Children’s Account winners. HH Sayyid Taimur bin Assad bin Tariq Al Said picked the two lucky monthly winners who received RO 20,000 each. The lucky 12 weekly winners covering all regions of Oman received RO 2,000 each.

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Standard Chartered PLC appoints V. Shankar to the Board as Group Executive Director

Shankar to be the most senior International Banker based in the Middle East

London, 12 December 2011 – The Board of Directors (the “Board”) of Standard Chartered PLC (the “Company”) today announces that V. Shankar (“Shankar”) has been appointed Group Executive Director of the Company with effect from 1 January 2012.

Shankar (53), a Singaporean, will continue to be based in Dubai, where he moved in May 2010 to become CEO, Europe, Middle East, Africa and Americas.

He joined Standard Chartered in 2001 and was appointed to the Group Management Committee in September 2007. He is also a Director of Standard Chartered Bank and Chairman of Principal Finance and the Standard Chartered Private Bank. Prior to his current position, he was Group Head of Origination and Client Coverage and served as Group Head of Corporate Finance. Before joining Standard Chartered, Shankar worked for Bank of America in Asia and the USA for 19 years.

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BankMuscat launches BM S&P GCC Large Cap Index Fund

MUSCAT, 11 December 2011 – BankMuscat, through its Asset Management department, one of the leading fund managers in the GCC region, recently launched the BM S&P GCC Large Cap Index Fund (BankMuscat Standard & Poor’s Large Cap Index Fund), an index tracking fund directed at institutional investors aiming to tap into the attractive growth potential of the GCC region markets.

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CELEBRATIONS FOR WINNERS OF BANKDHOFAR’S WEEKLY PRIZE DRAW

12th December 2011 Muscat, BankDhofar announced the winners of its Al Heson R.O. 10,000 weekly prize as well as winners from the exclusive ladies and Mazin and Mazoon children’s account, with a prize win of RO 5,000 each. The draw was held at the Bank’s Kamil Wafi Branch under the auspices of Mr. Rashid Wani Hudaib Al Hashmi, member of the Shura Council.

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BankMuscat wins top Bank of the Year award by Banker for 9th time

MUSCAT, 11 December 2011 – BankMuscat, the leading financial services provider in the Sultanate, has notched another distinction, winning for the ninth time the ‘Bank of the Year – Oman 2011’ award by The Banker (Financial Times, London). Reckoned the most prestigious global banking award, the 12th annual Banker awards were hotly contested by the world’s leading financial institutions.

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BankMuscat, FIU of ROP host Anti-Money Laundering seminar

MUSCAT, 10 December 2011– BankMuscat, the leading financial services provider in the Sultanate, and the Financial Intelligence Unit of Royal Oman Police (ROP) hosted a seminar on Anti-Money Laundering and Combating Terrorist Financing at the Bank’s head office.

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