Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank PJSC (ADCB) today published its financial results for the second quarter of 2023 (Q2’23), reporting a net profit of AED 1.932 bn, an increase of 23 percent year-on-year (YoY). This strong performance is driven by broad-based income growth and improved efficiency metrics.
ADCB logged a net interest income of AED 2.930 bn, an increase of 14 percent YoY, and a non-interest income of AED 1.129 bn, a 22 percent YoY increase.
Meanwhile, the bank’s operating income stood at AED 4.059 bn, climbing 16 percent YoY, with its cost to income ratio improving 260 basis points YoY to 32.5 percent.
Looking at ADCB’s performance in H1’23 as compared to H1’22, net profit reached AED 3.811 bn, a 25 percent increase, net interest income stood AED 5.782 bn, a 23 percent increase, while non-interest income settled at AED 2.190 bn, rising by 28 percent. The operating income reached AED 7.971 bn, increasing by 24 percent, while the bank’s cost to income ratio improved 450 basis points YoY to 32.0 percent.
Commenting on the bank’s quarterly financial results, Ala’a Eraiqat, ADCB’s Group Chief Executive Officer, said, “ADCB is experiencing solid growth momentum and continues to set new records, with first half net profit up 25 percent year on year at AED 3.811 billion, which translates into a return on average tangible equity of 14.8 percent.
“The Bank’s strong market position and digital innovation are driving growth against a backdrop of the UAE’s robust economic fundamentals. In the first half, ADCB extended AED 38 billion in new credit across diverse economic sectors and to the retail segment, resulting in net loan growth of 5 percent during the period. In tandem, deposits have also increased by AED 7 billion, reflecting the trust that customers place in our franchise.”
“The Bank’s focus on service excellence is translating into strong growth in our customer base. In the first half, ADCB attracted a record of over 260,000 new retail customers through its UAE operations, and over 3,500 new corporate clients,” he added.
For his part, Deepak Khullar, Group Chief Financial Officer at ADCB, commented, “ADCB is delivering high quality earnings growth, reporting a 23 percent year on year rise in Q2 net profit, characterised by a broad-based increase in revenues and disciplined cost management in the face of an inflationary environment.
“Healthy loan growth, coupled with rising benchmark rates, have driven a 14 percent year on year increase in Q2 net interest income. It is also pleasing to see continued diversification in revenue streams. Quarterly fee and trading income were up 43 percent and 48 percent year on year, respectively. This contributed to a 22 percent rise in non-interest income, which represented 27.8 percent of total operating income in Q2, up from 26.4 percent a year earlier.”
UAE’s historic space mission ends with astronaut Sultan Al Neyadi’s return
UAE astronaut Sultan Al Neyadi and his fellow Crew-6 members have successfully returned to Earth, concluding their historic space mission. The crew members safely disembarked from the Dragon Endeavour spacecraft with assistance from SpaceX recovery personnel. Al Neyadi, the last to exit the spacecraft, completed the process exactly one hour after the splashdown.
Welcome home, #Crew6!
— NASA (@NASA) September 4, 2023
Crew-6’s remarkable space mission spanned an impressive 186 days, setting a new record as the longest mission in Arab history. The Dragon capsule made a secure touchdown off the Florida coast at 8:17 am on a Monday, with Al Neyadi emerging from the Dragon spacecraft just an hour later. During this mission, Al Neyadi achieved significant milestones, elevating the UAE’s status in the global space arena. He completed the longest-ever space mission by an Arab, spending six months aboard the International Space Station (ISS) and conducting groundbreaking scientific experiments for the betterment of humanity and scientific advancement.
As Sultan Al Neyadi, the UAE’s second astronaut, emerged from the Dragon spacecraft, he greeted onlookers with a smile and a wave. It’s worth noting that astronauts returning from extended periods in space often experience an adjustment period as they readapt to Earth’s gravity. The recovery process for the crew may take up to two hours to ensure their well-being after this remarkable mission.
UAE’s economic agreements with Turkey and Indonesia spring into action
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is entering a new era of economic collaboration with two rapidly growing global players as it activates two of its Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreements (CEPAs). The UAE-Türkiye CEPA and the UAE-Indonesia CEPA have officially come into force, setting the stage for enhanced trade and investment cooperation.
The primary goal of these CEPAs is to foster economic ties by doubling non-oil trade. The UAE-Türkiye CEPA aims to elevate bilateral non-oil trade to an impressive $40 billion within five years, while the UAE’s CEPA with Indonesia seeks to push non-oil trade beyond $10 billion within the same timeframe. These agreements also aim to facilitate investment projects valued at $10 billion in various sectors.
In the words of HE Al-Zeyoudi, “The implementation of our CEPAs with Türkiye and Indonesia marks a significant step forward in our foreign trade program. Both agreements will unlock significant opportunities for our private sector in two of the world’s most dynamic centers of growth.”
These CEPAs are the third and fourth of their kind to come into force for the UAE, following successful agreements with India in May 2022 and Israel in April 2023. They are a testament to the UAE’s foreign trade agenda, strategically forging robust economic connections with nations of global importance. Both CEPAs promise to reduce or remove tariffs on a wide range of goods, eliminate trade barriers, and create pathways for investments in vital sectors like logistics, energy, food production, fintech, e-commerce, and travel and tourism.
The UAE-Indonesia CEPA, inked in Abu Dhabi in July 2022, aims to significantly boost bilateral non-oil trade from $4.08 billion to over $10 billion within five years. Additionally, the agreement targets a combined trade in services worth $630 million by 2030. Notably, over 80 percent of UAE exports to Indonesia will now be exempt from customs duties under this pact. This partnership also has an eye on nurturing the rapidly expanding Islamic economy, projected to reach $3.2 trillion by 2024. It will accelerate investment projects worth $10 billion across sectors like agriculture, energy, infrastructure, and logistics. The UAE-Türkiye CEPA is equally impactful, having eliminated or reduced customs duties on 82 percent of product lines, accounting for more than 93 percent of bilateral non-oil trade. Türkiye was the UAE’s fastest-growing top ten trading partner in 2022, witnessing a 40 percent increase in non-oil trade to $18.9 billion. The newly liberalized trade environment is set to drive this figure to an impressive $40 billion within the next five years.
HE Al Zeyoudi also stressed that the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreements play a vital role in attaining the nation’s objectives, in particular the vision laid out in “We The UAE 2031”, which seeks to double the UAE’s non-oil foreign trade to AED4 trillion and elevate national exports to AED800 billion. The recently published statistics from H1, 2023, which show a record non-oil foreign trade value of AED1.239 trillion for the first six months of the year, demonstrate that the UAE is firmly on track – and that the CEPA program will help maintain this upward trajectory.
Elon Musk’s ‘X’ unveils audio and video calling features to come
In a significant development, Elon Musk’s social media platform, formerly known as Twitter and now rebranded as “X,” is poised to introduce video and audio calling features. The announcement was made by Musk himself on August 31, when he took to the platform to declare, “Video & audio calls coming to X.”
This move is part of Musk’s broader vision to transform X into what he calls an “everything app.” Notably, these features will be accessible across a range of operating systems, including iOS, Android, Mac, and PC. Importantly, users won’t be required to share their phone numbers to avail themselves of these communication capabilities. According to Musk, the app is being positioned as an “effective global address book,” emphasizing its multifaceted utility.
Video & audio calls coming to X:
– Works on iOS, Android, Mac & PC
– No phone number needed
– X is the effective global address book
That set of factors is unique.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 31, 2023
As X continues to evolve and expand its offerings, it appears poised to diversify its services well beyond its initial identity as a micro blogging platform. The introduction of video and audio calling, coupled with its positioning as a comprehensive address book, underscores Musk’s ambition to make X an integral part of users’ digital lives. The platform’s growing foray into data collection and utilization also raises important questions about privacy and data security, which will likely be closely scrutinized as these changes take effect.