Business / Companies

China's largest bank ICBC opens new branch in Brisbane, Australia

(Xinhua) Updated: 2016-09-21 13:23

SYDNEY - The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China has opened a new branch in Queensland, Australia, signalling new opportunities for the state's investors and exporters.

Queensland state Acting Premier and Treasurer Curtis Pitt said in a statement on Wednesday that the new ICBC branch in Brisbane was a testament to Queensland's strong and growing economy while offering mutually beneficial opportunities to Chinese investors who were interested to invest in the sunshine state.

ICBC is one of the biggest banks in the world, with 5 million corporate customers and 496 million personal customers, and a geographic footprint in 42 countries and regions.

"The new ICBC branch will be able to fully support businesses engaged in trade between China and our state," Pitt said.

ICBC which commenced operations in Australia in 2008 already operates a branch in Sydney, Melbourne and Perth and previously held a representative office in Brisbane.

The bank is also the fourth major Chinese bank to establish a presence in Queensland in recent years.

"It (ICBC) will also support Chinese companies seeking mutually beneficial investments in Queensland as well as service Queensland companies doing business in China or interested in entering the market," Pitt said.

ICBC Chairman Huiman Yi said the bank had experienced periods of stable growth and development and has become one of the largest banks in the world with assets totaling A$4.4 trillion ($1.6 trillion).

"As part of ICBC's growing confidence in the state of Queensland, we have made the decision to establish a branch in Brisbane," Yi said.

Pitt said China was Queensland's largest merchandise trading partner with exports totalling A$11.1 billion ($8.39 billion) largely on coal and base metals and imports totalling A$7.2 billion ($5 billion) on clothing, electrical, and manufactured products.

"China is also the largest source of international students studying in Queensland, representing almost 19 percent of enrolments," Pitt said.

"In addition, of the 2.5 million overseas visitors to our state each year China was the largest single source, accounting for almost 20 percent of total international tourists," Pitt said.

"The new ICBC branch will help build on these types of existing bonds and develop new connections that have the potential to generate new business opportunities both here and in China and that means more jobs," he said.

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