Commonwealth Bank media release


Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Australia’s largest bank has been granted a Renminbi licence for its Shanghai Branch by the China Banking Regulatory Commission.  

The RMB licence enables CBA to broaden its institutional offering to incorporate all aspects of trade and investment for clients doing business in the fast growing and deep trade corridor between Australia and China. The licence complements CBA's Beijing and Shanghai branch offering and the bank's presence in the recently expanded Shanghai Free Trade Zone.  

James Rickward, Executive General Manager International, Institutional Banking & Markets said, “Our clients can already open RMB accounts, settle trades in RMB and enjoy executing RMB electronically using our CommBiz Markets platform with single sign on settlements capability.  The RMB licence increases our ability to deliver holistic tailored solutions that maximise business opportunities and minimise risk for our cross border clients.

“With growth in trade and investment flows expected to accelerate between China and Australia as a result of the China Free Trade Agreement, CBA is now well positioned to support our clients in our specialist sectors of Natural Resources, Utilities, Transport, and Financial Institutions as well as those clients either trading or investing in Australia or New Zealand where we are seeing strong deal flow specifically in the property and agricultural sectors.”

“CBA is committed to China and has been closely following the development in RMB and are a foundation member of the Australia ASX-Bank of China RMB settlement platform launched last year. We expect to see ongoing developments in this space as companies understand the benefit of using RMB ranging from cost savings, better trade terms and much improved settlements cycle.”  

A dedicated RMB solutions team headed by Sangeeta Venkatesan has been established to assist clients understand the solutions available to them when dealing in the Australia-China corridor and the benefits associated with using RMB as a trade or investment currency.

CBA has had a presence in the Chinese market for over two decades after opening its first China representative office in 1992 in Beijing.   CBA opened its first institutional banking branch in Shanghai’s Pudong District in 2010, followed by a second branch in Beijing in late 2013.  

The Group also participates in retail commercial banking and insurance in China through its International Financial Services business unit.  CBA has a long term partnership with two City Commercial Banks; Bank of Hangzhou and Qilu Bank.  In addition BoComm Life is a life insurance joint venture between CBA and Bank of Communications, China’s 5th largest bank.


Commonwealth Bank of Australia

CBA is Australia’s leading provider of integrated financial services, including retail, premium, business and institutional banking, funds management, superannuation, insurance, investment and share-broking products and services.

CBA’s Institutional Banking & Markets business provides relationship management and product capability for the Bank’s Corporate, Government and Institutional clients. The Bank offers total capital solutions to clients, ranging from core transactional banking to debt, equity and financial markets risk management products and services.

CBA’s global trade capabilities allow clients to access and manage their trade finance, foreign exchange and cash management positions through our leading CommBiz online platform.  CBA’s trade capability opens up global trade to the award winning benefits of our CommBiz platform, bringing end-to-end trade banking solutions to CBA customers through a single global window.  Our global trade offering includes: Foreign Currency Account; International Money Transfer; Supply Chain Finance and Export and Import Trade Finance.

Institutional Banking & Markets global reach extends through offices in Auckland, Beijing, Hong Kong, Houston, London, New York, Shanghai, Singapore, Tokyo and throughout Australia.

Media contact:

Erica Borgelt
Commonwealth Bank Media Relations
Ph: 02 9117 2992