Trust in UAE banking sector shows 6% increase, reveals UBF survey

DUBAI, The UAE Banks Federation, UBF, has unveiled the results of its 2018 Trust Index Survey, revealing that 74 percent of respondents had high trust in the UAE banking sector, up from 68 percent in 2017. This is the fourth consecutive year UBF carries out this survey.

The survey, conducted in collaboration with Kantar – a data, insights, and consulting company – also revealed that consumer confidence in the banking sector increased, with 95 percent of retail banking customers being satisfied with the performance of their main bank, up from 93 percent in the previous year.

The results of the 4th edition of the Trust Index Survey also showed that overall impressions have improved, with 83 percent of participants recording a ‘very positive’ perception towards UAE banks, compared with 76 percent in 2017 and 72 percent in 2016.

Specific areas that have shown significant improvement are ‘Excellent Customer Service’, which is up from 65 percent to 76 percent year-on-year, y-o-y; ‘Contribution to the Economy’, which is up from 68 percent to 77 percent y-o-y; and ‘Range of Products and Services’, which is up from 65 percent to 76 percent y-o-y.

Commenting on the results, AbdulAziz Al Ghurair, Chairman of UBF, said, “The sustainable growth of the economy is strongly related to consumer confidence, and trust is a key parameter that helps us understand the banking industry’s capability to generate this confidence. We are delighted that despite global geopolitical and economic headwinds, this 4th edition of the Trust Index Survey shows marked improvements, demonstrating the UAE banking sector’s ongoing commitment to enhance services and products, provide convenience and outstanding customer experience, and address key issues and challenges.”

Consumers believe that banks are well equipped for dealing with a variety of issues in the sector. ‘Keeping up with digital innovations’ was the highest performing area, followed by ‘contributions to the economic development of the UAE’. However, when asked what challenges banks in the UAE faced, 61 percent of the respondents answered ‘high-interest rates for loans and credit cards.’ The survey also highlighted the fact that the UAE enjoys higher trust in the banking sector than many other developed nations, including the USA, UK, China, Japan, France and Germany.

“UBF will continue working closely with its 52 member banks to facilitate the exchange of knowledge and fulfill its key role to elevate the standards of the industry for the benefit of the wider community and country. We have a responsibility to support the UAE’s progressive vision to empower society at all levels, and we are confident that the results of this Trust Index Survey will inspire banks to keep improving, better prepare for the future, and help address the ever-changing challenges in the market,” he added.

72 percent of respondents stated that UAE banks are equally good or even better than banks in their home country, up from 65 percent in 2017.

‘Good customer service’ and ‘safe and secure services and goods’ were the top of mind associations with UAE banks � 48 percent and 43 percent, respectively. 78 percent of respondents stated that UAE banks are excellent or very good at providing convenience.

77 percent of respondents stated that their experience with ATMs was excellent or very good. 76 percent of respondents stated that their experience with internet banking was excellent or very good.

Launched in 2015 by UBF to measure consumer perceptions and confidence in the banking industry, the annual Trust Index Survey gathers valuable data which helps drive corrective measures and strategic action plans throughout the sector.

Source: Emirates News Agency