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Wells Fargo Establishes DIFC Branch

by Lorys Charalambous,, Cyprus

06 February 2013

Wells Fargo and Company, One of the United States' largest banks, has opened a new branch in the Dubai International Financial Center (DIFC) to support the expansion of its business in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.

Wells Fargo anticipates the move will allow the firm to secure more business for its Global Financial Institutions (GFI) program, which involves the provision of trade, payment, deposit, credit and foreign exchange services to financial institutions globally.

"Wells Fargo has operated in the MENA region for more than 15 years and we intend to strengthen our presence and capabilities to best serve our GFI customers," said Charles Silverman, head of Wells Fargo's GFI business. "With our new location in DIFC, we can provide our customers in the region with an expanded range of products and services."

Currently, Wells Fargo has 12 team members in the new branch office, which is managed by Shoar Hassan, and is located in Gate Village at DIFC. Known as the region's leading financial center, DIFC serves as the regional headquarters for many global companies and financial institutions.

"We are pleased to welcome Wells Fargo to DIFC and look forward to supporting the company's mission to expand its offering in the Middle East and North Africa," commented Jeffrey Singer, CEO of DIFC Authority. "Not only does the addition of such a well-established global name to our client portfolio reinforce Dubai's position as a leading business hub, providing accessibility and connectivity to surrounding markets, but also shows recognition of the potential opportunities within the region."

Operating from more than 35 global locations, Wells Fargo's International Group now has branch offices in Canada, Cayman Islands, Dubai, Hong Kong, London, Seoul, Shanghai, Singapore, Taipei and Tokyo.

Wells Fargo's new DIFC branch will benefit from the DIFC's highly attractive tax and regulatory regime, offering firms 0% income tax guaranteed for 50 years, 100% foreign ownership, no exchange controls and a legal system based on English common law.

TAGS: tax | business | company formation | law | banking | offshore company formation | offshore | corporate headquarters | multinationals | offshore banking | Dubai

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