09:48 (GMT +7) - Tuesday 20/08/2019

BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT

Citi sees strong client growth in Asian trade corridors

Released at: 16:56, 13/02/2019 BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT

Citi sees strong client growth in Asian trade corridors

Photo: Citi

Client growth in 2019 to mainly come through key trade corridors in Asia-Pacific region.

by Van Anh

Vietnam is exporting more and more manufactured goods to Asia and the rest of the world and is a fantastic place to showcase Citi’s Asia-to-Asia flow strategy.

Citi is targeting 25 per cent growth in revenues from client work in intra-Asia trade corridors in 2019, after the bank reported strong growth in these corridors in 2018.

Client growth will mainly come through a series of key trade corridors in the Asia-Pacific region the bank has identified and invested further resources in, which has supported growth. The bank’s key corridors include South Korea to ASEAN, South Korea to China, South Korea to India, Japan to ASEAN, Japan to China, and China to ASEAN.

“Asia is capturing a greater share of global trade and US companies will increasingly target the region and we expect strong growth as intra-Asian trade corridors expand further,” said Mr. Gerry Keefe, Citi’s Head of Corporate Banking, Asia Pacific.

Having recognized the shift in trade flows and the stronger presence that China and broader Asia will continue to play in the movement of trade flows, Citi put in place a strategy to capitalize on the ongoing growth along these corridors. Vietnam is strategically located neighboring China to the south and is central to ASEAN. The Vietnamese Government provides a business-friendly environment and the country boasts high manufacturing output and improving infrastructure.

Citi opened additional Asia desks over 2017 and 2018 to help clients as they look to expand to new areas and markets across these corridors. The bank now has over 20 Asia desks in operation - including eleven China Desks, nine Korea Desks, and an India Desk in New York and South Korea.

In the last two years, Citi set up a Japan Desk and a Korea Desk in Vietnam to serve Japanese and South Korean corporate clients, as part of Citi Asia Pacific’s strategy to better connect its global network to Asian clients and capture a greater share of intra-Asia flows.

“Our established network and product capabilities ensure that Citi is well placed to help clients mitigate risks and thrive in this environment,” Mr. Keefe said.

The work Citi does for clients in these corridors includes capital raising, M&A, trade finance, cash management, and FX hedging. Clients include all of Asia’s major corporate champions and emerging champions and also leading companies in the Fortune 500, where Citi already banks 90 per cent of this group in the region.

“We are banking many of Asia’s corporate champions and major MNCs with the country desks supporting clients globally,” said Mr. Keefe. “With a global network and in-depth local expertise in each of our markets, we are uniquely positioned to advise our clients as they think through this evolutionary process and the potential future optimization of their operations and supply chains.”

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