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Bank Muscat, Oman's biggest bank, is planning to open two more branches in Saudi Arabia this year as part of an expansion plan in the Gulf, Chief Executive AbdulRazak Ali Issa said on Saturday.
"We are planning to open two more branches in Saudi Arabia... One branch will be in Jeddah," he told reporters on the sidelines of a conference.
Bank Muscat has already won approval by Oman's central bank to open a branch focusing on investment banking in Saudi Arabia, which will be the second branch of the Omani bank in the kingdom.
Bank Muscat has also applied for branch licences in Qatar, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates, Issa added.
"We are waiting for approval from regulating authorities of these countries. We are still concentrating on the Gulf region for expansion," he said.
Like other lenders in the region, Bank Muscat is expanding abroad to diversify its revenue flows.
Analysts surveyed by Reuters expect on average the lender to boost fourth-quarter net profit by 49 per cent to 23.74 million riyals. (Reuters)
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