Citi and Emirates NBD collaborate to launch first-of-its-kind 24/7 USD cross border payments in the Middle East

Today, Citi (NYSE: C) and Emirates NBD, a leading banking group in the MENAT (Middle East, North Africa and Türkiye) region, announced a collaboration to launch Citi’s first-of-its-kind 24/7 USD Clearing service in the Middle East. This makes Emirates NBD the first bank to use Citi’s 24/7 USD Clearing service to make cross-border USD payments available to their corporate and retail clients 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, end to end across their branch network.

The service will be available in Emirates NBD’s UAE and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia branch networks, helping to remove barriers to the payment flow process in the region that stem from different weekend and early afternoon cut-off times in the UAE for executing transactions. Emirates NBD, in collaboration with Citi, plans to expand the service to all its branches in the Middle East and across the globe, including partnerships with Emirates NBD’s third-party institutions.

Shahmir Khaliq, Head of Services, Citi, said: “Consumers demand instant payment capabilities no matter where they are in the world, and our collaboration with Emirates NBD is an important step in our journey to creating a multibank solution that is designed to deliver an end-to-end, ‘always on’ experience for participant banks and their customers. Our 24/7 USD Clearing service is a clear differentiator in the market. It demonstrates the full value of our globally leading cross border payments and clearing capabilities, which enable our clients to make payments faster and in a more efficient and transparent manner.”

Emirates NBD will fully utilise Citi’s 24/7 USD Clearing capabilities, including commercial payments and treasury payments execution. The collaboration with Citi reinforces Emirates NBD’s industry-leading role in providing its clients with innovative services.

Ahmed Al Qassim, Group Head of Wholesale Banking, Emirates NBD, said: “Our collaboration with Citi to bring 24/7 USD Clearing to the region reflects our commitment to facilitate the payment needs of our clients in key trade corridors in which they operate. The introduction of 24/7 USD Clearing will support the growth ambitions of our clients by giving them the ability to seamlessly transfer funds in a timely manner without having to worry about cutoffs and holidays.”

Citi’s 24/7 USD Clearing technology and network is an essential component of the solution enabling Emirates NBD to provide 24/7/365 USD services between its branches. The service enables financial institutions to make USD payments across Citi’s 1,500 financial institution customers globally, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, including holidays in the United States. Citi now has more than 130 FI clients using its 24/7 USD Clearing service since 2022.