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Taiwan, HK, London should cooperate in offshore RMB: banks

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- A ranking official of the Bankers Association on Tuesday called for Taiwan's cooperation with Hong Kong and London on developing offshore renminbi (RMB) business, saying this will generate benefits for three parties.

Bankers Association Chairwoman Lee Jih-chu (李紀珠), who doubles as chairwoman of the state-invested Bank of Taiwan (台灣銀行), said on the sidelines of the Asian Financial Forum in Hong Kong that her missions at this year's forum are four-fold, one of which being to make a bid to partake in the annual meeting between Hong Kong and London on RMB business cooperation.

She said that the tie-up with Hong Kong and London will speed up the development of RMB-based products in Taiwan, and Hong Kong as well as London will gain if Taiwan comes into the picture.

Moreover, Lee said she was tasked with another three missions. To begin with, she went to Hong Kong to push for in-depth cooperation between banks across Hong Kong and Taiwan. Secondly, she filled in for the Bankers Association to seek more exchanges and talk about organizing more business match-making activities with the Hong Kong Association of Banks.

Finally, Lee said she would take the opportunity to pay calls to Bank of Taiwan's Hong Kong-based clientele, including the Yue Xiu Group.

Alderman Fiona Woolf, Lord Mayor of the City of London, has been visiting Taiwan to talk about issues related to Taiwan-UK financial cooperation with President Ma Ying-jeou and high-ranking Taiwanese officials.

Woolf told the Unite Daily News in an interview last week that she was impressed by Taiwan's large amounts of RMB deposits and expressed hope that the two countries can cooperate to expand offshore renminbi business by making use of the large renminbi deposits and a wide array of products and services offered by the UK

Hong Kong Yuan Deposits to Hit 1 Trillion: CY Leung

Taiwan's yuan deposits currently sit at the foot of the table among offshore RMB hubs.

Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying (梁振英, CY Leung) revealed at the Asian Financial Forum that Hong Kong's yuan deposits stood at 1 trillion in late 2013, nearly seven times as much as Taiwan's yuan deposits of 150 billion.

Leung further indicated that there have been 330 tranches of RMB-denominated bonds traded on the Hong Kong stock market, raising 309 billion Chinese yuan in total. He expected that RMB internationalization will be achievd in ten years, with Hong Kong playing a major part in developing and expanding RMB business around the world.

Singapore's yuan deposits stood at 172 billion in late 2013, while the total amount of yuan cleared in Singapore amounted to 2.6 trillion in the same period, according to the latest figures from the Monetary Authority of Singapore and ICBC Singapore.

The British government has been aggressively promoting London to become a fully fledged offshore renminbi trading center in the West, Sajid Javid, Britain's Financial Secretary to the Treasury, said in an interview with UDN in London.

Javid said that mainland China promised to give London 80 billion yuan of the Renminbi Qualified Foreign Institutional Investor (RQFII) quota in October 2013 when he and Chancellor George Osborne attended the fifth UK-China Economic Financial Dialogue in China.

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