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Thailand Industry – ICBC Plans to Back Thailand-China Rail Projects

By on Jan 12, 2015 in Industrial

Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (Thai) expects to participate in financial support of the new railway upgrades while helping Thai corporates in the construction sector raise funds in offshore markets. Last week, Thailand and China signed an agreement to build new railways. China will build two routes, the first from Nong Khai province to the Map Ta Phut deep-sea port in Rayong province via Nakhon Ratchasima and Saraburi’s Kaeng Khoi district, totalling 734 kilometres. A second 133km line will run from Kaeng Khoi to Bangkok.

This project is expected to lure Chinese investment into the Kingdom, while Thai construction companies will also benefit. This is an opportunity for ICBC (Thai) to help those companies raise funds in both the Chinese and US currencies, said Zhigang Li, the bank’s chief executive officer.

Thais account for 16-17 per cent of ICBC (Thai)’s customer base, and the bank plans to increase that figure. However, Li acknowledged that the competition in retail banking in this country was furious.

Next year, the bank plans to launch e-banking and mobile banking to cater to Thai and Chinese customers, he said.

For Thai corporate clients, the strategy of ICBC (Thai) is to collaborate with local banks to offer syndicated loans.

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