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New initiatives to boost internationalization of RMB

Updated: Oct 13,2015 7:55 PM     Xinhua

New initiatives to further promote the international use of Renminbi (RMB) through Singapore were agreed at the 12th meeting of China-Singapore Joint Council for Bilateral Cooperation (JCBC) co-chaired by Vice-Premier Zhang Gaoli and Singaporean Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean, said Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) on Oct 13.

MAS said the existing cross-border RMB initiatives between Singapore and the China-Singapore Suzhou Industrial Park (SIP) and Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-City (SSTEC) will be expanded to the cities of Suzhou and Tianjin, which means that banks in Singapore will be able to lend RMB to corporates across Suzhou and Tianjin, and corporates in Suzhou and Tianjin will be able to issue RMB bonds in Singapore.

The expansion will give more financing options to Suzhou and Tianjin corporates as well as provide financial institutions and investors in Singapore additional avenues to deploy their growing RMB liquidity in Singapore.

MAS said corporates in Suzhou and Tianjin will be allowed to repatriate 100 percent of the proceeds raised from bonds issued in Singapore. This greater flexibility will provide a stronger incentive for corporates in Suzhou and Tianjin to raise RMB funds in Singapore.

Corporates in SIP will be allowed to borrow from Singapore-based companies, which will facilitate SIP corporates’ overseas expansions and provide them stronger incentive to set up Finance and Treasury Centers in Singapore.

Qualified privately-owned banks in SSTEC will be allowed to borrow from Singapore-based banks, which will lend support to the development of privately-owned banks in SSTEC and allow such banks to establish commercial relationships with banks in Singapore.

MAS stated that Singapore supports the inclusion of the RMB in the International Monetary Fund’s Special Drawing Rights’ basket of currencies. The use of RMB for payments, trade settlement, and investments has grown rapidly in recent years.

Singapore and China also look forward to enhancing financial connectivity to support projects under the Belt and Road Initiative, in order to facilitate access by Chinese companies to ASEAN markets through Singapore, said MAS in the press release.

MAS Managing Director Ravi Menon noted that 2015 has been a fruitful year for financial cooperation between Singapore and China. The initiatives announced at JCBC on Oct 13 are a testament to the excellent relations between the two sides.

“We look forward to strengthening these relations and forming new pathways as we grow our financial markets together,” said Ravi Menon.