Standard Chartered has signed renminbi (RMB) cross-border trade settlement account agreements with five MENA -based banks. This will allow them to open RMB accounts in China to facilitate trade activities. The five banks are: Alinma Bank Saudi Arabia, Bank Al Falah Pakistan, BankMed Lebanon, Habib Metropolitan Bank Pakistan and Union Bank Jordan. The agreements were signed recently at the Annual Thought Leadership Middle East and North Africa Bankers’ Conference in Beirut.
Commenting on the agreements, Farooq Siddiqi, regional head of transaction banking MENA , Standard Chartered Bank, said, “As the trade volume between China and the MENA region continues to grow significantly year on year, we feel that banks in the region should be prepared to meet the increasing RMB requirements of their corporate clients.”
Standard Chartered has been leading the way in RMB cross-border trade settlement programmes since China issued initial guidelines (to Hong Kong, Macau and the ASEAN countries) in 2009.