KHALEEJ TIMES, Saturday, Sep 14, 2019 | Muharram 15, 1441
Consumer trust in the UAE banking sector surges
Consumer trust in the UAE's banking sector has been growing stronger
year-on-year, ranking the industry way ahead of its peers in developed nations,
according to a survey.
The 2018 Trust Index Survey by the UAE Banks Federation (UBF) revealed that 74
per cent of respondents had a high trust in the UAE banking sector, up from 68
per cent in 2017. The UAE enjoys a higher trust in the banking sector than many
other developed nations, including the USA, UK, China, Japan, France, and
Germany, according to the survey conducted in collaboration with Kantar, a data,
insights, and consulting company.
"Consumer confidence in the banking sector increased, with 95 per cent of retail
banking customers being satisfied with the performance of their main bank, up
from 93 per cent in the previous year," AbdulAziz Al Ghurair, chairman of UBF
said on Thursday.
The results of the fourth edition of the Trust Index Survey also showed that
overall impressions have improved, with 83 per cent of participants recording a
'very positive' perception towards UAE banks, compared with 76 per cent in 2017
and 72 per cent in 2016.
"The sustainable growth of the economy is strongly related to consumer
confidence, and trust is a key parameter that helps us understand the banking
industry's capability to generate this confidence," said Al Ghurair.
He said that despite global geopolitical and economic headwinds, the latest
survey shows marked improvements, demonstrating the UAE banking sector's ongoing
commitment to enhance services and products, provide convenience and outstanding
customer experience, and address key issues and challenges.
Specific areas that have shown significant improvement are excellent customer
service, which is up from 65 per cent to 76 per cent year-on-year; contribution
to the economy, which is up from 68 per cent to 77 per cent; and range of
products and services, which is up from 65 per cent to 76 per cent.
Al Ghurair said that consumers believe that banks are well equipped for dealing
with a variety of issues in the sector. 'Keeping up with digital innovations'
was the highest performing area, followed by 'contributions to the economic
development of the UAE'. However, when asked what challenges banks in the UAE
faced, 61 per cent of the respondents answered 'high interest rates for loans
and credit cards.'
"UBF will continue working closely with its 52 member banks to facilitate the
exchange of knowledge and fulfill its key role to elevate the standards of the
industry for the benefit of the wider community and country. We have a
responsibility to support the UAE's progressive vision to empower society at all
levels, and we are confident that the results of this Trust Index Survey will
inspire banks to keep improving, better prepare for the future, and help address
the ever-changing challenges in the market," said Al Ghurair.
This year's edition surveyed a group of 1,515 adults based in the UAE in 2018.
Respondents were carefully selected from a diverse range of nationalities and
demographics to ensure a representative sample.