New London, Conn., – Citizens Financial Group (CFG) has introduced a streamlined payment capability that allows its commercial customers to settle third-party and trade-related payments in Renminbi (RMB), the local Chinese currency. By making onshore payments in RMB, Citizens Bank, Charter One and RBS Citizens are helping their customers mitigate currency risk, improve efficiency and reduce transaction costs.
Citizens is one of the first regional banks in the United States to be granted approval by the People’s Bank of China to maintain an account in RMB, which is China’s “People’s Currency.”
“Our commercial customers are taking advantage of the rapid growth and expansion opportunities in China and already wire close to $1 billion annually to counterparties there. This is a 70 percent increase over the past five years and underscores how important China capabilities are to our commercial clients,” said Ned Handy, Citizens Bank President for Connecticut and Rhode Island. “This offering gives companies banking with Citizens Bank and Charter One advantages as they negotiate terms on purchases of Chinese goods and services.”
This new capability offers a number of benefits to Citizens Bank, Charter One and RBS Citizens customers:
· The ability to source the currency from RBS Asia allows Citizens to offer competitive exchange rates.
· Faster speed-of-settlement improves the clearing process for local payments in China.
· U.S. companies with payroll exposure in China are able to fund in RMB.
· China-based vendors may give more favorable shipping terms when paid in RMB.
“We leveraged the global currency-trading capabilities of our parent company, RBS, to develop this new service,” said Prabhat Vira, Head of CFG’s Global Transaction Services Americas. “Similar to other products we have designed to help make financial transactions more efficient, this new capability allows our customers to tie in to our strength as a global bank. In this case, we have seamlessly integrated with operations in RBS Asia to support their continued growth in this increasingly important part of the global economy.”