The National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) has opened its new subsidiary, National Bank of Abu Dhabi Malaysia Berhad in Kuala Lumpur.

The bank is strategically positioned to bridge Arab business interests with Malaysia and will promote bilateral trade and investments, says Leong See Meng, NBAD’s Malaysia CEO.

“We have a firm foothold in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), complemented by a strong presence in the GCC and Mena regions,” he adds.

Qamber Ali Al Mulla, senior general manager of NBAD’s international banking division, says the subsidiary will bring value to the Malaysian market and the bank’s clients in the UAE, GCC and Asia regions.

The latest move to Kuala Lumpur will expand NBAD’s global network to 14 countries.

NBAD also has plans to expand its presence to Lebanon, Iraq, India, South Sudan and other key destinations in the Mena region, the bank says in a statement.

The UAE was Malaysia’s biggest trading partner in the GCC in 2011, accounting for M$21.06bn (US$6.6bn) of trade flows.  Bilateral trade with the GCC stood at M$43.76bn in 2011.