Citigroup Claws Its Way Back Into Saudi Arabia – The Wall Street Journal.

Citigroup Claws Its Way Back Into Saudi Arabia

By Stephen Kalin and Rory Jones 
RIYADH, Saudi Arabia—When Citigroup Inc. [US:C] shut down operations in Saudi Arabia after Sept. 11, 2001, government officials here felt betrayed. For years after, the Saudis snubbed Citi as executives realized they had made a mistake and tried to rebuild their business.
Two decades later, the third-biggest U.S. bank has again found favor in the kingdom as one of the foreign lenders helping Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman modernize its oil-heavy economy.
In recent years, Citi has participated in the country’s biggest listings, including the offering of oil giant Saudi Arabian Oil Co., known as Aramco. It obtained a license in 2018 for investment banking, hired local staff and opened an office. It now plans to deepen its activity by applying for a full banking permit. That would put it on par with competitors such as JPMorgan Chase & Co. in offering banking and payments to international companies in Saudi Arabia and could lead to lucrative work with the kingdom’s biggest institutions.

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