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UAE central bank grants licence to Russia’s MTS Bank

Building, City, Town WAM
The UAE central bank issued the licence last year for MTS Bank

The Central Bank of the United Arab Emirates has granted a licence to Russia’s MTS Bank, according to information on its website.

MTS Bank is registered in Abu Dhabi and received the licence last year, the information shows.

It is a fintech unit of Russia’s largest mobile operator Mobile TeleSystems. The Financial Times reported the approval from the central bank earlier on Wednesday.

Russians were the top non-resident buyers of residential property in Dubai in the third quarter, consultancy Betterhomes said in October, as they seek a safe haven from the Ukraine conflict.

The UAE, like Saudi Arabia, is a member of the Opec+ oil alliance that includes Russia and has maintained good ties with Moscow despite Western pressure to help isolate Russia over the invasion of Ukraine, which Moscow calls its “special military operation”.