* Foreign ministers from members of the Community of Portuguese Language Countries, or CPLP, are set to discuss a proposal to launch a development bank at a meeting in July, Jornal de Angola reported, citing Cape Verde Foreign Minister Olavo Correia. CPLP nations also include Angola and Mozambique.
GULF COOPERATION COUNCIL
* Finablr PLC intends to use half of the proceeds from its $400 million London IPO to expand both organically and through acquisitions focused on intellectual property and technology and across payments and foreign exchange, its CEO Promoth Manghat told Reuters. The United Arab Emirates-based payments firm is seeking to invest in existing business in the Middle East, Asia and Africa and the payments market in Europe and the U.S. over the next two to three years.
* Abu Dhabi National Insurance Co. PSC said it will discuss at a May 28 board meeting a plan to increase the company's capital to 570 million UAE dirhams through the conversion of convertible bonds amounting to 390 million dirhams, with the new share resulting from the conversion amounting to 195 million dirhams.
* The UAE's Securities and Commodities Authority warned the public against financial firms using "false certificates" as their supposed license after receiving several inquiries about the validity of such certificates. The regulator noted that some companies state that they are licensed in their websites even when they are not.
* The UAE Banks Federation said it nominated Khamis Buharoon, deputy chairman of Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank PJSC, to represent the banking body in the Union of Arab Banks, Argaam noted.
* Bahrain's Investcorp Bank BSC agreed to acquire U.S.-based Mercury Capital Advisors LLC for an undisclosed sum, subject to regulatory approvals. Under the deal, which is expected to close in the third quarter, Mercury Capital will remain an independent business with its current executives.
REST OF MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA
* Egypt's new bank law seeks to raise the minimum capital requirement for domestic banks to 5 billion pounds from 500 million pounds at present, while that for units or branches of foreign-owned banks must shore up their capital to at least $150 million from at least $50 million within a three-year period, Daily News Egypt reported.
* Israel-based Bank Leumi le-Israel BM and Phoenix Holdings Ltd. have agreed to each acquire a 20% stake in logistics company Taavura Holdings Ltd. for 250.5 million shekels each, Reuters reported.
* Ilan Steiner is standing down as a head of the Bank of Israel's currency department at August-end after five years in the role.
EAST AND WEST AFRICA
* Parties opposing the takeover by KCB Group PLC of National Bank of Kenya Ltd. are claiming that country's National Treasury, which is handling the deal, is pressing ahead with the sale without the involvement of the Privatization Commission, which has to execute every privatization proposal that the Cabinet approves, The East African wrote. The Kenya National Assembly's Finance and Planning Committee has also launched probes into the deal to see if the assets have been valued correctly and that pensioners, employees and taxpayers' interests are protected.
* Kenyan banking groups KCB, Co-operative Bank of Kenya Ltd., Diamond Trust Bank Kenya Ltd., Standard Chartered Bank Kenya Ltd. and Equity Group Holdings PLC have taken steps to bolster their controls after being fined an aggregate amount of 392.5 million shillings for handling dirty money stolen from the National Youth Service, Business Daily Africa reported.
* Diamond Trust Bank Kenya named Linus Gitahi its new chairman, effective May 23, replacing Abdul Samji, who retired the same day. Gitahi formerly served as CEO of Nation Media Group Plc, according to Business Daily Africa.
* Standard Chartered Bank Kenya Ltd. named Patrick Obath board chairman, Business Daily Africa reported. Obath replaced Anne Mutahi, whose five-year term lapsed in December last year.
* At least 10 companies, including Rwanda's Bank of Kigali, have expressed interest in listing on the Nairobi Securities Exchange Plc, possibly ending the decade-long IPO drought on the bourse, Daily Nation wrote.
* Kenya's central bank could start vetting shareholders that control at least 10% of microfinance banks if the Microfinance Bill 2019 is enacted, Business Daily Africa noted.
* GCB Bank Ltd. is looking to transform its development finance arm into an investment bank called GCB Securities, Bloomberg News reported, citing Managing Director Anselm Sowah. The bank has already recruited staff for the new unit, Sowah said, adding that the Ghanaian bank also plans to establish a bancassurance business with a foreign insurer and to open new units in English-speaking West African states this year.
* Seventeen shareholders of collapsed lender uniBank (Ghana) Ltd., along with its receiver Nii Amanor Dodoo and the country's Attorney General will appear in a court-ordered arbitration hearing on whether or not the bank's placement under receivership violated the law, Joy Business wrote. The Ghanaian central bank placed the lender under receivership in August last year in light of solvency difficulties.
* Nigeria's Jaiz Bank PLC plans to increase its board members' salary by 100%, subject to shareholders' approval during its June 26 annual general meeting.
CENTRAL AND SOUTHERN AFRICA
* Old Mutual Ltd. said it has decided to separate with CEO Peter Moyo due to "a material breakdown of trust and confidence" between him and the board. The South African insurer said the decision was "neither the result of performance or financial misconduct" but is solely due to a conflict of interest issue — which relates to an investment made by Old Mutual in Moyo's investment firm NMT Capital prior to his appointment in 2017, Bloomberg noted.
* Russia's VTB Bank PJSC , which holds a controlling stake in the Angola-based Banco VTB Africa SA, said it plans to sell all of its share capital in the entity to Rostang, a company registered in the Virgin Islands, Jornal de Angola wrote, citing Angola's ARC competition regulator.
* Mozambique's central bank announced stricter controls on foreign trade operations that will ban the use of cash for cross-border purchases, requiring all major transactions to be conducted through the financial system, according to O Pais. The central bank did not say stipulate a maximum value to be allowed for the use of cash.
* Main opposition Malawi Congress Party secured a restraining order that prevents the country's election commission from releasing the results of the May 21 presidential polls following allegations of electoral fraud, Bloomberg wrote. The MCP wants to delay the announcement until a recount of votes from 10 out of 28 districts is completed.
IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD
Asia-Pacific: HDFC Bank sells stake in unit; South Korea rejects 2 internet bank bids
Deza Mones, Henni Abdelghani and Helen Popper contributed to this report.
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