Qatar National Bank opens in China

Bank extends into the world’s second largest economy as part of international expansion plan
Qatar National Bank opens in China
By Courtney Trenwith
Mon 29 Jul 2013 09:36 AM

Qatar
National Bank (QNB) has opened operations in the world's second largest
economy, China.

The bank
said it had received all regulatory approvals to open a representative office
in Shanghai that would seek to act as a liaison for Middle Eastern
companies wanting to establish their business in China or invest into the fast
emerging country.

It also
will support Chinese companies looking to expand into the growing Middle East
market, which is gaining a reputation as being the new Silk Road, connecting
Asia with Europe and Africa.

The bank
said its new office in Asia's largest market was part of its continued
international expansion strategy. Since 2005 it has opened offices in 26
countries.

The
Shanghai office is in the Shanghai World Financial Center, China's tallest
skyscraper.

China
has one of the highest growth rates globally and is expected to overtake the US
economy to become the largest in the world by 2016, according to the
Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

It
recorded a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of 7.5 percent in the second quarter,
in line with the government's growth target.

“Having
experienced an investment boom in recent years, China is now refocusing from an
export-led economy towards a consumer-led economy. There will still be a strong
focus on business investment as well as on the expansion of factories,” a QNB
statement says.

“China
has also accumulated $3.5tr in foreign exchange reserves, which represents the
country's global buying power.”

Other
Middle Eastern countries also are vying for a presence in China, in particular
the UAE.

Trade
between China and the UAE has soared by an average 35 percent every year for
the past decade, surpassing $35bn last year, according to the Dubai Chamber of
Commerce and Industry. It now represents 10 percent of total trade excluding
oil.

About 60
percent of China’s total trade passes through the UAE, from where it is
re-exported to Africa and Europe.

Dubai
Chamber of Commerce and Industry also is aiming to open an office in China to
help facilitate more trade within three to five years.

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