Rasmala Investment Bank (Rasmala) and RBS Group have signed an agreement to produce equity research on a number of shares listed on Middle Eastern stock markets.

Reportedly, Middle Eastern companies have been enjoying international attention over the last few years, spurring investor demand for transparent and accurate information about regional market activities. Rasmala and RBS will conduct research covering several sectors and listed companies on Middle East stock markets to respond to this demand.

Rasmala-RBS Research is expected to cover 50 to 60 stocks within 12 to 18 months from its launch scheduled for April 2010.

Simon Penney, head of global banking and markets division at RBS in Middle East & Africa, said: “RBS is actively expanding its Equities product offering in the region. This strategic partnership will complement our existing strengths in corporate advisory, capital markets, treasury and trade finance. Joining forces with Rasmala demonstrates RBS’ continued focus and commitment to the Middle East & Africa business.”

Tamer Bazzari, CEO of Rasmala, said: “The alliance with RBS will ensure that our clients receive high quality research on companies listed in the Middle East combining Rasmala’s deep regional knowledge with RBS’ international experience. With the development of Middle East capital markets, international institutions will become steadily more active in the region, and this alliance will enable both of us to serve them better.”

Zafar Alam, head of equities and structured retail at RBS in Middle East & Africa, said: “We are confident that Rasmala’s regional footprint and expertise in equity research and brokerage will provide comprehensive insight into Middle East listed companies to benefit international investors and institutions.”