Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Maybank interested in partnering Bank Asya, but rules out equity participation

By Lee Cherng Wee
Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank) has expressed interest to collaborate with Turkey's Bank Asya but has ruled out any equity participation.
"We are open to collaboration in terms of products. Collaboration does not have to be in the form of equity. It is not our intention to look at any equity investment in Turkey.
"Our focus remains within South-East Asia and South Asia, to some extent," president/CEO Datuk Seri Abdul Wahid Omar told reporters at the 6th Annual Kuala Lumpur Islamic Finance Forum yesterday.
On Monday, Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah said Bank Asya has expressed its intention to form ties with Malaysian banks in order to establish its Islamic banking sector, particularly with Maybank and CIMB.
"We will get in touch with the minister's office to find out a bit more. Turkey is a large economy. The size of the Turkish economy is US$750 billion (RM2.57 trillion), which is half of the Asean economy," said Abdul Wahid.
Abdul Wahid added that Maybank's possible collaboration with Bank Asya could be in the form of trade financing.
"We are not looking at expanding into Turkey but it's more along the lines of encouraging trade. We are looking into trade finance opportunit ie s ava i l able for Malaysian companies doing business with their Turkish counterparts," he said.
"We are looking at how we can help Malaysian companies in making more investments and trade with Turkish entities. "We have seen MAHB develop the airport in Turkey, thus we hope Malaysian companies will do more business here," said Abdul Wahid.

(This story appeared in The Malaysian Reserve on Nov 4, 2009. The Malaysian Reserve is a daily business/finance newspaper published out of Kuala Lumpur, with a sectoral page on Islamic finance on Mondays, edited by Habhajan Singh)

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