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Morning Coffee: Meet the new bank now expanding in Singapore

Bank of China expands in Singapore

BOC is building here

Bank of China (BOC) may be generating headlines at home for cutting executive pay, but in Singapore the news is all about its expansion.

The firm has announced the opening of two new branches in the city state – bringing the total to eight – and has signed a new deal with the Singapore Exchange (SGX), reports the Business Times. The SGX agreement will be of particular interest to job seekers with experience in RMB trading as it will see the rolling out of RMB-denominated commodities and derivatives contracts. BOC is SGX’s first Chinese settlement bank for its derivatives market.

BOC’s expansion in Singapore is not entirely surprising – as we reported last month, the bank is ramping up its overseas recruitment. It increased its foreign headcount (excluding Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan) from 3,962 employees at the end of 2013, to 4,414 in 2014 – an 11.4% increase. And Singapore is already a growth market for BOC – the division’s total assets stood at S$38.3bn by the end of 2014, up 30% from the previous year.

BOC is not your only option if you want an RMB-related role in Singapore, however. As we’ve already noted, other banks are also expanding their RMB operations there. Although still well behind Hong Kong, Singapore was the world’s second largest offshore processer of RMB payments in February, with 6.17% of the market. The rise of RMB operations for banks has “created high demands on firms hiring and retaining their top talent”, Ian Massey, head of talent acquisition at Standard Chartered, told us in February.

Meanwhile:

UK bank tax sparks fresh debate among investors about whether HSBC and Standard Chartered should move their headquaters to Asia. (Reuters)

Barclays appoints James Lin country manager for Taiwan. (Reuters)

China regulator warns investors not to borrow money or sell property to buy shares. (Wall Street Journal)

University of Hong Kong plans to enforce student visits to mainland China. (South China Morning Post)

ICBC sets up RMB clearing bank in Qatar. (CNTV)



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