Wed, Feb 20, 2019 - Page 11 News List

Citi eyeing strong growth along Asian trade paths

Staff writer

Citibank yesterday said it is targeting a 25 percent growth rate this year in revenue from clients working in intra-Asia trade corridors, after it reported strong growth last year in these areas.

Client growth will mainly come through a series of key trade corridors in the Asia-Pacific region that the bank has identified and invested further resources in to support such growth.

These corridors are 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 Asia, and we expect strong growth as intra-Asian trade corridors expand further,” corporate banking, Asia Pacific, head Gerry Keefe said.

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 growth along these corridors.

It opened additional Asia desks in 2017 and last year to help clients as they look to expand to new areas and markets along these corridors.

The bank now has more than 20 Asia desks in operation, including 11 China desks, nine South Korea desks and an India desk in New York and South Korea.

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

The work Citi does for its clients in these corridors includes capital raising, mergers and acquisitions, trade finance, cash management and foreign-exchange hedging.

Clients include all of Asia’s major corporate champions and emerging champions, and also leading companies in the Fortune 500 — Citi already banks 90 percent of this group in the region.

“We are banking many of Asia’s corporate champions and major MNCs [multinational corporations], with the country desks supporting clients globally. 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,” Keefe said.

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