The UAE central bank has asked banks to freeze assets of two former officials of Abu Dhabi-owned International Petroleum Investment Company (Ipic).
The central bank, in a circular, has directed some of major banks to freeze the accounts of Khadem al-Qubaisi and Mohamed al-Husseiny and provide information about their deposits and transactions, news agency Reuters cited baking sources as saying.
The circular did not give reasons behind the move, and the central bank did not respond to a Reuters email seeking comment.
Al-Qubaisi was replaced as Ipics managing director in April 2015. He later stepped down as chairman of Ipics unit Aabar Investments and several other senior positions with regional firms. Al-Husseiny was replaced as CEO of Aabar last year after holding that post since 2010.
Ipic has close business links to Malaysias scandal-hit state fund 1MDB, which is at the centre of corruption and money-laundering investigations in the US, Switzerland, Singapore and Luxembourg. Last year, Ipic bailed out the debt-laden 1MDB, by agreeing to provide it with $1bn in cash and to assume $3.5bn of 1MDB debt in exchange for some of the funds assets, according to Reuters.
Both former executives did not respond to phone calls seeking comments. Spokesmen for Ipic and Aabar declined to comment on the circular.