StanChart to Exit 7 markets in Africa, Middle East.

StanChart Bank Plc, the UK-based lender, plans to shut down its network in seven countries in Africa and the Middle East.

This is as it seeks to grow its presence in other developing markets, including Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

The lender said in a statement Thursday that it will exit from Angola, Cameroon, Gambia, Jordan, Lebanon, Sierra Leone and Zimbabwe.

It will also exit consumer, private and business banking businesses in Tanzania and the Ivory Coast to focus solely on corporate, commercial and institutional banking.

According to a statement issued Thursday, the markets it plans to exit made up about 1% of the lender’s total group income in 2021 and a similar proportion of profit before tax.

StanChart Bank said it remains committed to the region and has recently opened its first branch in Saudi Arabia and obtained preliminary approval for a banking license in the Arab Republic of Egypt.

StanChart Bank CEO Bill Winters said the lender is keen on seeking growth opportunities as it simplifies the business.

The lender said the planned exits are all subject to regulatory approvals.

StanChart Bank Plc is a UK multinational banking and financial services company headquartered in London, England. The global lender has over 1,200 branches in 70 countries and more than 87,000 workers.

In its 2022 outlook, StanChart Bank Plc says the COVID-19 pandemic and the geopolitical landscape continue to create uncertainties. The global economy is expected to recover slower than what happened in 2021.

But the lender views Asia, where it has the most extensive presence, as remaining the fastest-growing region globally.

The Group views changes in the global business ecosystem, from the digital space to trade flows and supply chain shifts, as just some of the reasons why is excited at the prospects in 2022.

ALSO READ: StanChart Bank Plc to cut down its Global Branch Network, Staff

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