China Construction Bank opens new offices in Singapore

(From left) Mr Ren Dongyan, GM CCB Singapore Branch, Mr Xu Yiming, CFO CCB Head Office, Mr Fang Xinwen, Charge d'Affaires of the Embassy of the People's Republic of China in Singapore, Mr Wang Zuji, President CCB, Mr Ng Chee Meng, Minister for Educat
(From left) Mr Ren Dongyan, GM CCB Singapore Branch, Mr Xu Yiming, CFO CCB Head Office, Mr Fang Xinwen, Charge d'Affaires of the Embassy of the People's Republic of China in Singapore, Mr Wang Zuji, President CCB, Mr Ng Chee Meng, Minister for Education (Schools) and Second Minister for Transport, Mr Yew Sung Pei, Assistant CEO of IE Singapore, Mr Bernard Wee, Executive Director, Monetary Authority of Singapore and Mr Hu Zhanghing, Chairman & CEO of CCB International (Holdings) Limited, at the launch of China Construction Bank's new offices in Singapore.ST PHOTO: DESMOND WEE

Another banking giant from China has expanded its presence here to take advantage of Singapore's strength in infrastructure finance and wealth management.

The China Construction Bank (CCB) opened an infrastructure financing services centre and a private banking facility yesterday that will operate alongside its local branch.

CCB International, the bank's investment services subsidiary, also opened a Singapore company yesterday after obtaining a licence for fund management and securities trading.

The openings stemmed from a memorandum of understanding last year between CCB and International Enterprise (IE) Singapore.

CCB is China's second largest bank with around 21 trillion yuan (S$4.2 trillion) worth of assets.

Yesterday's moves followed the April 12 official opening of Shanghai Pudong Development Bank's branch here, its first overseas outlet.

Both banks noted that Singapore is an important hub to serve China's outbound capital and companies under the country's Belt and Road initiative.

Education Minister (Schools) and Second Transport Minister Ng Chee Meng said at the CCB opening ceremony yesterday that Singapore and China share deepening economic and financial market links.

Mr Ng co-chairs the Singapore-Sichuan Trade and Investment Committee.

He hopes more Chinese companies will work with local firms and financial institutions to expand their Belt and Road activities.

"These new offerings bode well for Singapore companies and global enterprises that are based here. They can tap on the network and services of CCB Singapore branch, to seek Chinese partners or financing," Mr Ng said.

Bilateral trade between Singapore and China reached $114.96 billion in 2016, "constituting 8 per cent of the total trade volume between China and countries along One Belt, One Road," said Mr Fang Xinwen, the Chinese embassy's charge d'affaires here.

Singapore has been China's largest foreign investor since 2013, and China is also Singapore's largest trading partner.

Wong Wei Han

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 19, 2017, with the headline 'China Construction Bank opens new offices in S'pore'. Print Edition | Subscribe