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Experian to make companies' credit moves safer overseas

By Fan Feifei | China Daily | Updated: 2017-05-14 16:22

Experian, the leading global financial information services company, said it plans to increase investment in the countries and regions related to the Belt and Road Initiative.

It said the increased investment, especially in the Middle East, would better serve Chinese companies by offering them credit authorization, helping them link to cross-border trade partners and preventing fraud in overseas markets.

"Chinese companies are confronted with multiple challenges when going out to develop cross-border trade," said Isaac Wang, general manager of credit services of Experian China.

He said the first problem was credit authorization.

"Moreover, they are not familiar with overseas markets, including local environment and spending habits, as well as the status of overseas partners and suppliers."

Wang said Experian aims at helping Chinese companies cope with these challenges, grasp opportunities and expand businesses in the economies participating in the Belt and Road Initiative by using its rich experience in the credit services sector.

The experience mainly comes from its provision of an overseas credit rating service, credit investigation and monitoring services, decision analytics, overseas anti-fraud and risk control, as well as involvement in cross-border trade.

The Dublin-headquartered company has operations in Russia, the United Kingdom, Italy, Spain, South and Southeast Asian countries and Africa.

It has established national anti-fraud centers in many Belt and Road economies, including India and Russia, to share information and data related to fraud with local banks, and to support Chinese companies to carry out businesses there.

Moreover, it offers anti-fraud and overseas personal authentication services for merchants at cross-border e-commerce platforms engaged in business in these economies.

Wang said that in the process of expanding overseas, financing was always a challenge due to an incomplete domestic credit system, especially for small and medium-sized enterprises, adding they were helping the companies solve their financing difficulties.

Guo Wei, general manager of decision analytics at Experian China, said Chinese groups have to face the risk of fraud when expanding into overseas markets.

An Experian report showed that 59 percent of firms in Asia Pacific expected that fraud would increase in the next five years.

With 17,000 people operating across 37 countries, the London Stock Exchange-listed company said it plans to expand new business, offering overseas credit investigation reports and introducing data analysis tools from mature markets in the future.

According to the Ministry of Commerce's latest data, China's trade with the Belt and Road economies saw 26.2 percent growth year-on-year in the first quarter of 2017.

Analysts said a new trend in Chinese companies' going global was that more SMEs were attracted to overseas markets.

Zheng Xinli, deputy director of the China Center for International Economic Exchanges, said measures must be taken to improve the credit system in the economies related to the Belt and Road Initiative.

Zheng said China should work with the economies to establish new credit rating agencies and set up commodity quality evaluation systems.

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