Gulf International Bank (GIB), the offshore commercial bank based in Bahrain, says its net profits rose by 5.2 per cent in 1996 to $94.5 million. The bank says a 6.5 per cent rise in total assets to $8,983 million reflects growth both in its loans and securities investment portfolios.

‘The broad-based profit momentum was maintained with advances recorded in both interest and non-interest earnings, and continued containment of the expense base,’ a statement from GIB says. Full financial results are due after the bank’s annual general meeting, for which no date has yet been set.

GIB is owned by Gulf Investment Corporation, which is itself owned by the six Gulf Arab states. GIB’s core market is corporate lending in the Gulf, which accounts for about half of its loan portfolio. It is also active in regional syndicated lending and project finance. Abdullah al- Kuwaiz is due to become the bank’s general manager next month, replacing the long-serving Ghazi Abdul-Jawad.