Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the world’s most valuable and profitable bank, is accelerating its expansion abroad with plans to open more branches in the Middle East and in major cities across Europe.
The bank is also looking at possible acquisition targets in both Europe and the Middle East and has plans to expand rapidly in Canada after buying a small network of six branches from Hong Kong-based Bank of East Asia earlier this year.
该行还正在欧洲和中东物色潜在收购目标，并计划在加拿大快速扩张。今年早些时候，工行收购了总部位于香港的东亚银行(Bank of East Asia)在加拿大的6家分行。
The European expansion is expected to be high-profile as the group strives to become more global and follow the growing number of Chinese companies doing business overseas.
“ICBC anticipates some big developments in terms of Chinese companies doing more business in Europe and they want to be ready,” said one senior China-based European banker.
Most of China’s largest banks have resumed their push to expand outside the country’s borders in recent months, dusting off plans that were shelved during the height of the global financial crisis, but ICBC has been the most aggressive so far.
It plans to open five new branches in Europe – in Paris, Brussels, Amsterdam, Milan and Madrid – over the coming months. The bank, with a market capitalisation of nearly $300bn, has branches in London, Luxembourg and Frankfurt, and plans eventually to establish its European headquarters at the Luxembourg branch. ICBC formally opened its Abu Dhabi branch on Sunday and is also considering branches in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, to add to the Dubai branch and Doha subsidiary company in the region.
The chairman of Bank of China, the country’s fourth-largest lender by assets, last month said Chinese banks should take advantage of the problems facing financial institutions to expand overseas.
按资产计算为中国第四大银行的中国银行(Bank of China)的董事长上月表示，中国各银行应当利用金融机构正面临的问题，在海外扩张。
“It is logical for Chinese banks to expand internationally as they follow their Chinese corporate clients,” Peter Sands, chief executive of Standard Chartered Bank told the FT in Beijing on Monday. “But they will do so in a relatively cautious manner which I think is wise.”
“中国各银行进行国际扩张、跟随自己的中国企业客户是合乎逻辑的，”渣打银行(Standard Chartered Bank)行政总裁冼博德(Peter Sands)周一在北京对英国《金融时报》表示。“但他们将以相对谨慎的方式推进，我认为这是明智的。”
During a visit to Portugal by Chinese President Hu Jintao on Monday, ICBC signed an agreement with Millennium BCP, Portugal’s largest listed bank, to co-operate on trade finance, corporate lending and investment banking. In a similar move, Bank of China signed an agreement with Banco Portugues de Investimento to work with the Portuguese lender to provide financial services to Chinese companies doing business in Portugal or in Portuguese-speaking African countries.
在中国国家主席胡锦涛周一访问葡萄牙期间，工行与葡萄牙最大的上市银行千禧银行(Millennium BCP)签署协议，双方将在贸易融资、企业贷款和投行业务领域开展合作。类似地，中行也与葡萄牙投资银行(Banco Portugues de Investimento)签署协议，同这家葡萄牙银行开展合作，向在葡萄牙或葡语非洲国家开展业务的中国企业提供金融服务。
BOC was the most international of the country’s state-controlled banks, as well as its main foreign exchange lender. It has announced plans to set up new branches or expand operations in Australia, Malaysia, Indonesia, Cambodia, Turkey and Brazil.
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