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Open a Bank Account in Bahrain

Updated on Wednesday 16th February 2022

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Open a Bank Account in Bahrain.jpgInvestors and individuals who derive income from employment are required to open a bank account in Bahrain. This is an important step and one that is taken care of as soon after arrival after possible. For company registration in Bahrain, it is essential for the creation of the new business entity.
Choosing a bank that offers a multitude of services, that are suitable for business or individual needs, is essential in order to guarantee a well-rounded banking experience.
Our team of agents specializing in company formation  can help answer any questions you may have on opening a bank account in Bahrain as well as when one should take care if this step, in relation to business creation. 
In this article, we discuss the basic requirements that are generally set forth by banks. However, we recommend that interested individuals seek out specialized assistance, especially when they cannot be present in the country during the entire procedure and a power of attorney should be used. 

Open a business bank account in Bahrain in 2022

Investors who wish to set up a company in Bahrain need to follow a number of steps, starting with choosing the right type of company, preparing the corporate documentation, and registering the business with the Commercial Register (SIJILAT).
Opening a bank account in 2022  is one of the important steps when setting up a business in Bahrain . The minimum capital for the business is deposited therein and, when needed, investors can also choose to access additional funding through a corporate loan, should this be in line with their business plan.
Below, our agents who specialize in company formation in Bahrain list some of the issues that investors should take into consideration when choosing a bank:
  • Funding: the bank can provide access to attractive credit and lending options for companies; this is an option that should be explored before deciding on a bank;
  • Payment solutions: the chosen bank should offer suitable solutions to streamline domestic and foreign payments; this is important for international businesses in Bahrain;
  • Accessibility: the bank should provide for easy usage of its online platform and mobile apps and an integrated and easy to use authorization system for trade transactions;
  • Others: deposit accounts, interest enhancement, and other solutions for investments and liquidity offered by the bank can also be taken into consideration. 
Please keep in mind that this list should only be used as a general guideline. Other criteria may be important for investors and corporate branches in Bahrain may choose to set up the bank account with a bank branch with which the parent company abroad is also engaged in banking (provided that the foreign bank is present in Bahrain).

Types of bank accounts one can open in Bahrain

There are various types of bank accounts that can be set up in Bahrain for both natural persons and companies. Among these, the most employed are:
  1. personal bank accounts which can be opened by both residents and non-residents;
  2. savings bank accounts that can be created with local and foreign financial institutions;
  3. corporate bank accounts that are available for companies operating in and outside Bahrain;
  4. merchant accounts that are provided by companies servicing e-commerce businesses.
If you decide to open a bank account in Bahrain, no matter its type, our local consultants can guide you through the entire procedure.

Open a personal bank account in Bahrain

Opening a bank account for personal use in Bahrain is generally easier compared to the process of opening a corporate account. The documents that are usually required are listed below:
  • - passport and visa copies;
  • - a copy of your work permit, when applicable;
  • - a copy of the residential address;
  • - other documents may be optional, as required by the bank, for example, a salary certificate or a bank statement from a different financial institution with which you have worked in your country of origin.
If you are an investor looking to open a personal account after having created the one for company formation in Bahrain, our team can answer your questions.

Choosing a Bahrain bank to open an account with in 2022

The opening of a bank account in in Bahrain 2022 is no longer complicated, many local financial institutions enabling simplified procedures.
Moreover, the creation of personal and corporate bank accounts is possible with most Bahrain banks in 2022, but also with foreign financial institution operating here through branches.
If need to create a bank account in 2022, our agents in Bahrain  are at your service.

Local and foreign banks in Bahrain

Natural persons and companies that want to open bank accounts in Bahrain have several choices when it comes to choosing their service providers. Bahrain is one of the most appealing countries for both employment and business reasons in the Middle East and, as such, it is home to local and international banks that operate here through branch offices. This is why when choosing a bank, the options are not limited to one or two financial institutions.
Opening a bank account in Bahrain is an important step and choosing a suitable a bank is important for individuals and companies which usually seek more than one service with the same financial entity.
Bahrain citizens and residents can choose the bank in according with type of currency they transact in the most, or the services they need, if they send or receive money abroad often. This is also the case of companies that can choose to open a bank account in Bahrain based on various criteria.
In some cases, it is possible to start the bank account opening procedure remotely and complete it on arrival in Bahrain.
 If you plan to open a company in Bahrain and need guidance in setting up a bank account for it, our local advisors can help you. You can also grant us a power of attorney so that our specialists start the procedure as fast as possible before your arrival.


Banking services in Bahrain


All banks in Bahrain usually provide similar services no matter if they service Bahrain nationals or foreign citizens. However, there are also financial companies that under specific business licenses provide cryptocurrency-related services. There are around 50 such banks in Bahrain at the moment.
 Bahrain nationals also have the possibility of opening joint bank accounts for families.
Considering most banks in Bahrain offer traditional services, most of them have interconnected their ATM system in order to reduce or even eliminate withdraw fees.
When it comes to Bahrain companies, these too can benefit from various services tailored to their needs. These can set up bank accounts for all types of operations they have and can obtain numerous advantages when creating more accounts for employees’ salaries.
Those who want to set up Bahrain bank accounts have several currencies they can open them in. Among these:
  • - Bahraini Dinar;
  • - Saudi Riyals
  • - UAE Dirham;
  • - Euro;
  • - US Dollar;
  • - British Pound.
In some cases, it required for the account owner to deposit a minimum amount of money, however, the sum depends on the type of account and the bank with which it is opened.
It should also be mentioned that in the case of foreign citizens or companies, these have the opportunity to use the services of banks in their home countries provided that these operate through branch offices in Bahrain. Moreover, they can link accounts in their home countries with the ones in this state.
No matter with what financial company you decide to open a bank account in Bahrain, our experts are at your disposal with information about the procedure. We can also help you prepare the documents required by the selected bank.
If you need other legal services in Bahrain, our lawyers are at your disposal.

How to open a merchant account in Bahrain


E-commerce is one of the most prolific industries worldwide and online businesses are also present in Bahrain. These must comply with special requirements among which having websites and offering secure online payment options. For the latter, merchant accounts are a must for e-commerce businesses here.
Merchant accounts are a must and are used to process online payments. These can be linked to the corporate account of the business. The procedure of setting up a merchant bank account in Bahrain is simple and needs choosing a service provides that offers this option.
If you want to open a bank account in Bahrain for your online company, you can obtain more information from our agents. We can also assist with the company formation procedure in Bahrain.

Banks in Bahrain in 2022 

The right type of financial institution can be chosen based on a number of criteria, among which the provided services, its seniority on the Bahrain market and whether or not it is a bank that has branches throughout the world (thus providing an advantage to international investors who may have opened another account with the same bank in another country).
Below, our agents list some of the banks in Bahrain. Please keep in mind that this is only a guideline for choosing a bank when interested in company formation in Bahrain.
  1. Ahli United Bank: one of the largest banks, with more than 100 branches out of which more than 22 are based in the Kingdom;
  2. Arab Banking Corporation: also one of the top three banks as per its assets, in 2017 it reported its total assets at more than 30 billion $;
  3. Gulf International Bank: another one of the largest banks in Bahrain with reported assets in 2019 above 30 billion $; it has branches throughout the world;
  4. National Bank of Bahrain: it was established in 1957 and it was the first locally-owned bank in the Kingdom of Bahrain; it has 29 operating branches, 100 ATMs and it is present in 3 countries.
The banks listed above are only some of the ones present in Bahrain. 
If you need assistance choosing a bank before company registration in Bahrain, please feel free to contact us.

Meet us in Manama

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Call us now at +97339953988 to set up an appointment with Madhavan Kallath, our company formation expert in Manama. Alternatively you can incorporate your company without traveling to Bahrain.

As a Kallath and Company WLL client, you will benefit from the joint expertize of local lawyers and international consultants. Together we will be able to offer you the specialized help you require for your business start-up in Bahrain. 

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