UOB sees potential in 'dual circulation'
Singapore's United Overseas Bank (UOB) is seeking to take advantage of the greater opportunities provided under China’s new "dual circulation" development pattern, with a growing number of middle-income Chinese as potential customers and anticipated trade and investment opportunities to match the lender's advantages in cross-boarder support and solutions.
The bank aims to further explore cross-border financial services, support for startups and small-and-medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), as well as fintech as China continues to liberalize its financial sector and promote regional initiatives.
"The strategy, a domestic and an overseas circulation complementing each other, came very timely. It will bring more trade and investment opportunities not only to China, but also globally," Suan Teck Kin, the lender's head of research told reporters.
"There were similar attempts before, but not at such a scale nor in documents penned by the central government. "
Suan was taking part in series of online interviews with senior executives unable to attend the China International Import Expo in person due to the pandemic.
Attending CIIE for the third consecutive year, UOB reiterated its strength of an extensive network in Southeast Asia and well-established roots in China. It was one of the first batch of Southeast Asian banks to gain approval to handle capital accounts for clients in Shanghai, and obtained a retail RMB license in 2008.
Suan said the growing number of middle-income Chinese means more consumption and investment, and more opportunities for asset management, where foreign banks, including UOB, have more experience.
"As the domestic and overseas circulation complement each other, there will be huge potential to explore in supporting Chinese companies expanding in overseas markets and overseas clients trying to enter or expand in the Chinese market," Suan said.
"Banks like ours are strong in providing regional connectivity and building ecosystem partnerships that help customers seize business and investment opportunities opening up across the region."
On display at this year’s fair is its comprehensive suite of financial products and services including one-stop currency solutions for Southeast Asia, cross-border fund management and financing services, diversified trading and financing solutions for precious metals, virtual account solutions and wealth management products.