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HSBC Bank Middle East Limited moves its Head Office and place of incorporation from Jersey to the Dubai International Finance Centre.

With effect from 30 June 2016, HBME has moved its place of incorporation and head office from Jersey, Channel Islands, to the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), as a result of which it has become lead regulated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority. HBME will remain locally regulated in each of the countries in which it operates by the country’s Central Bank and its other regulators.

All of your banking arrangements and services will continue uninterrupted and unchanged and you do not therefore need to take any further action. For more information, please visit our Frequently Asked Questions.

A. The Move from Jersey to the Dubai International Financial Centre (the "Migration")

What has HSBC Bank Middle East Limited ("HBME") done?

  • HBME has announced that it has moved its Head Office and jurisdiction of incorporation from Jersey to the Dubai International Financial Centre with effect from 30 June 2016.
  • HBME will remain locally regulated in each of its countries by the relevant local regulators, but as a result of the Migration it is now lead regulated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority ("DFSA"), the regulator of financial services that operates within the Dubai International Financial Centre ("DIFC").
  • All of your banking arrangements and services will continue uninterrupted and unchanged and you do not therefore need to take any further action.

Why has HBME moved it Head Office and place of incorporation to the DIFC?

  • HBME undertakes regular strategic reviews to ensure that its structure remains an optimal one.
  • The primary reason for the Migration is that HBME wanted to re-locate its Head Office to a place that has a close geographical connection with where it undertakes its business and where its regional management team is located, i.e., the UAE and, more widely, the MENA Region.
  • The Migration therefore makes strategic sense for HBME.

What is the DIFC and who are the DFSA?

  • The DIFC is an autonomous financial free zone and legal jurisdiction physically located within the Emirate of Dubai, in the UAE.
  • The DFSA is the regulator of financial services that operates within the DIFC.
  • The DFSA has been established as a regulator in the DIFC for over 10 years and during that period has established itself as a credible regulator.
  • When the DFSA regulatory regime was established in 2004, it was based on similar principles to the then Financial Services Authority regime in the UK, and today it remains broadly consistent with the principles of the Prudential Regulatory Authority, the HSBC Group’s lead regulator, and the Financial Conduct Authority, in the UK.
  • Many of the international wholesale banks operating in the UAE have a presence in the DIFC and are regulated by the DFSA.

What will change for HBME?

  • HBME has moved its Head Office and jurisdiction of incorporation from Jersey to the DIFC.
  • HBME will remain locally regulated in each of its countries by the relevant local regulators, but as a result of the Migration it is now lead regulated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority ("DFSA"), the regulator of financial services that operates within the Dubai International Financial Centre ("DIFC").
  • The Migration will not have any material impact for HBME customers. All of your banking arrangements and services will continue uninterrupted and unchanged and you do not therefore need to take any further action.

B. How Does the Migration Impact Our Customers?

How does it impact me?

  • There will not be any material impact for HBME customers.
  • HBME is now lead regulated by the DFSA but will remain regulated by local regulators such as the Central Bank in each of the countries in which HBME operates in MENA
  • All of your banking arrangements and services will continue uninterrupted and unchanged and you do not therefore need to take any further action.

What do I need to do?

  • You do not need to do anything.
  • All of your banking arrangements and services will continue uninterrupted and unchanged.

What does this mean for the existing agreed terms and conditions for my borrowing?

  • Contracts (including loan agreements) continue in full force and effect following the Migration and therefore both HBME and its customers continue to be bound by the existing agreed terms and conditions.
  • Where required, minor amendments to terms and conditions have been made to, among other things, replace references to the JFSC with the DFSA as the lead regulator of HBME.

Are there any changes to my products/services/customer terms and conditions?

  • There are no changes to the products or services we provide you as a result of the Migration.
  • All of your banking arrangements and services will continue, uninterrupted and unchanged.
  • There have been some minor changes to our customer general terms and conditions to the extent that they reference the JFSC to reflect the fact that HBME is now lead regulated by the DFSA.

Will the Migration result in re-papering of any existing contracts with HBME?

  • No, there will not be any need to be any re-papering of existing contracts with HBME.
  • For customers where general banking terms and conditions apply, there have been some minor changes to the extent that they reference the JFSC to reflect that fact that HBME is now lead regulated by the DFSA.
  • All of your banking arrangements and services will continue, uninterrupted and unchanged.

Are there any underlying differences that I should be aware of from this change (customer rights, protection, etc...)?

  • No, the rights of our customers are not materially impacted by the Migration. The material matters from a customer perspective in both regulatory regimes are broadly consistent.
  • Additionally, the DFSA regulatory regime was established based on similar principles to the then Financial Services Authority regime in the UK, and today it remains broadly consistent with the principles of the Prudential Regulatory Authority, the HSBC Group’s lead regulator, in the UK.
  • For customers where general banking terms and conditions apply, there have been some minor changes to the extent that they reference the JFSC to reflect that fact that HBME is now lead regulated by the DFSA.
  • All of your banking arrangements and services will continue, uninterrupted and unchanged.

Will there be any regulatory capital requirement changes for HBME as a result of its Migration to the DIFC?

  • No, there will not be any material regulatory capital impact for HBME.

Will the DFSA have cross country oversight over HBME i.e. outside of the DIFC?

  • Yes, HBME is now lead regulated by the DFSA, which means that it will have lead regulatory oversight of all HBME operations in the countries in which HBME operates across MENA. Those HBME operations will also remain locally regulated by the relevant country local regulators such as the Central Bank in each of the countries in which HBME operates in MENA.

I have a wealth product with HSBC - will this/these be impacted by the regulatory change?

  • The Migration will not have any material impact for HBME customers or the products that they hold.
  • If you hold investment funds, your investment will continue to be regulated by the relevant local country regulator in the country in which the investment fund was distributed. The investment fund will also continue to be regulated by the Fund's regulator.
  • If you hold a third party insurance product, your insurance will continue to be regulated by the relevant local country regulator that regulates insurance products in the country in which the product was distributed and the insurance provider's regulator.
  • If you hold a structured investment product, your investment will continue to be regulated by the relevant local country regulator in the country in which the product was distributed.

C. Miscellaneous

Will the Migration impact the Ratings of HBME?

  • Following HBME’s announcement of its intention to proceed with the Migration in September 2015, both Fitch and Moody’s reaffirmed their ratings of HBME, so HBME’s rating remain unchanged.

Will this change have any business continuity impact for any products or services currently offered out of HBME?

  • No

Will there be any changes in your financial reporting - information and timelines resulting from this move?

  • No, HBME currently prepares its financial statements in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards (“IFRS”) and will continue to do so.

Does the DIFC operate a deposit protection scheme?

  • No, the DIFC does not operate a deposit protection scheme.
  • However, you should note that HBME account holders did not enjoy deposit protection in Jersey as its deposit protection scheme only applied to accounts held in Jersey itself.

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