Indian banks target China

By siliconindia staff writer   |   Friday, 15 October 2004, 07:00 Hrs
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CHENNAI: With many Indian companies setting up units in China, the Indian banking sector is also looking at increasing business opportunities in the region and opening offices in that country.

"In the last five months alone, at least two Indian public sector banks viz., Bank of Baroda and Punjab National Bank have set up representative offices in China. Before this fiscal-end, another couple of banks including Indian Overseas Bank (IOB) are expected to open representative offices in China," officials said.

"We have substantial dealings in southeast Asia region. A China representative office will help our overall business in that region," a senior IOB official told PTI, adding the bank hopes to open its China office this fiscal.

He said many Indian firms like Sundram Fasteners, L&T, Tatas were setting operations in China.

"These companies will be more comfortable to deal with Indian banks," he said.

India's biggest bank State Bank of India (SBI) was the first from the country in this sector to pursue the China dream when it set up its representative office in Shanghai, the commercial capital of China, in 1997.

Since then, ICICI Bank and Canara Bank, in addition to Bank of Baroda and PNB, have also set up their representative offices in China.

"There is tremendous scope for banking as a large number of Indian companies are setting up operations in China. There is also enormous potential for doing banking with local Chinese companies as well," said Vinay Kwatra, counsellor (economic & commercial), Embassy of India in Beijing.

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