HSBC faces accusations that it helped to enrich senior Egyptian political and business figures now at the centre of corruption investigations. More than a dozen former associates of ousted president Hosni Mubarak are facing trial, as Egyptian investigators focus on allegations that land and state-owned industrial assets were sold at knockdown prices in a process the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) says was secretive.
Research by the Bureau, and published in the Observer newspaper, has concluded that HSBC:
■ raised more than £450m for two of Egypt’s biggest and most controversial property developers now embroiled in corruption court cases (shares in those companies have subsequently dived);
■ was the most active European investment bank in Egypt;
■ had on its Egyptian board two directors who in 2004 went on to become ministers of state overseeing land sales and privatisations under Mubarak.