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Frequently Asked Questions

1) What is IBAN and how does it help?

The International Bank Account Number (IBAN) has been introduced to standardise the identification of bank accounts. It is essential to understand the following points regarding IBAN:

The IBAN is not a new account number. Existing account numbers will not be replaced Additional characters will appear in front of existing bank account numbers. The original bank account number, plus the additional characters, will be known as the IBAN. Implementing the IBAN system will help improve the quality of information exchanged between banks both within in UAE and internationally. Its reliability and accuracy will reduce error and delays.

2) Is IBAN being implemented by all Banks in the UAE?

The Central Bank of UAE, has ruled to introduce IBAN, and have instructed all banks in UAE to implement IBAN.

3) Where do I get my IBAN for my HSBC accounts?

HSBC Bank Middle East Limited - UAE will communicate information related to IBAN via multiple channels.

Further information is also provided through our website, HSBCnet on - post - logon page, Personal Internet Banking and Business Internet Banking sites. You can also obtain information from your nearest Branch, or by contacting our call centres or your Relationship Manager.

4) Can HSBC help me to obtain the IBAN for accounts number with another Bank?

HSBC Bank Middle East Limited - UAE, is unable to provide IBAN for accounts held with another bank and advises you to approach the respective bank for assistance.

5) What happens if I don't quote the IBAN of the beneficiary while initiating a payment?

In case the IBAN is not used from 19 November 2011 onwards, payments will be processed without any delays or additional charges untill 11 April 2012 as per Central Bank's grace period of 6 months following which the processing of both inward and outward payments in your account will be rejected or may be delayed with additional processing charges as may be prescribed by Central Bank from time to time.

6) What happens if the IBAN is not quoted when receiving payments?

The Bank will not reject the payments received until 11 April 2012 with a valid account number. However, at the end of the grace period i.e. 12 April 2012, these payments will be rejected / delayed and may be subject to additional charges.

7) Do my overseas remitters need to quote my IBAN?

Yes, you should request your customers to make payments to your IBAN account number.

8) Do we need to quote IBAN for inter-account transfers (payments within HSBC)?

Where both the debit and credit accounts are with HSBC UAE, you can continue to provide the standard HSBC bank account number.

9) Currently, I use electronic delivery channels (i.e, Personal Internet Banking, Business Internet Banking, HSBCnet, HSBC Connect, SWIFTNet); do I need the IBAN when initiating electronic payments to UAE banks?

Yes, please ensure that you provide a valid IBAN at the time of initiating the payment instruction to ensure that your beneficiary gets the credit on time.

10) I have standing instructions loaded with HSBC for periodic payments; do I need to give revised instructions with IBAN?

Yes, if you currently have standing instructions set-up today you must advise HSBC of the IBAN number for your non-HSBC beneficiaries, by submitting an Accounts Services Form - you can find a copy on the internet or pick up the form from your local branch. We advise you to do this well in advance of three months from 19 November 2011, to ensure our systems are updated in time to avoid payment delays or rejections.

11) What if I give an instruction over the counter at a branch, do I still need to provide the IBAN of the beneficiary?

No, IBAN in UAE is for domestic electronic payments only. IBAN is not required for cheque deposit and cash deposit. However if you are applying for an electronic transfer over the counter then you will be required to provide IBAN.

12) I receive monthly payments into my account from my creditors/employers; what instructions do I need to give them?

Please provide your IBAN to your creditors/employer, to ensure timely receipt of funds into your account.

13) We are currently forwarding bulk salary payments (AutoPay) instructions via diskette, will this impact us?

Yes, for salaries, IBAN is required for all accounts including accounts which are in HSBC.

HSBC encourages you to use our eChannel - HSBCnet, for an efficient and seamless payments service, to find out more please contact your Relationship Manager.

14) Is there any service charge if we fail to provide IBAN at the time of making payment requests? Will there be any charge should the remitter fail to incorporate my IBAN at the time of making payments?

For the time being, there will not be any additional charges, other than normal transaction processing fee. HSBC will communicate the tariff changes to you, if required.

15) I want to send funds outside UAE, however the beneficiary is not aware of his IBAN, what should I do?

IBAN is being launched in UAE. If you are sending funds to a country where IBAN is not implemented then you are not required to quote his IBAN number. Additionally it is the responsibility of the beneficiary to communicate IBAN to you.