Experts from Standard Chartered’s Greater China Region hosted a roadshow in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Qatar and Pakistan to outline the benefits and investment opportunities from China’s Belt and Road (B&R) initiative, together with Renminbi internationalisation.
A statement of the bank here on Thursday said that the roadshow was kicked off in Dubai, and the delegation was now in Pakistan. It said that the bank’s regional roadshow coincides with the Renminbi’s official inclusion into the IMF’s `Special Drawing Rights’ or SDR list of global currencies, effective October 1, 2016.
The statement said that the Standard Chartered has been at the forefront of this journey, partnering with Chinese authorities and supporting global clients in leveraging the opportunities of Renminbi.
China’s B&R is a development strategy launched by the Chinese government in 2013. Also referred to as the `New Silk Road Plan’, the `Belt’ route links China with Europe through Central and Western Asia, and the `Road’ refers to the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, which connects China’s ports to Southeast Asian countries, Europe and Africa. Carmen Ling, the bank’s delegation lead to Pakistan, and Managing Director, Head of RMB Solutions for Corporate and Institutional Banking commented, `The Belt and Road (B&R) initiative as defined by China covers more than just infrastructure development.
Amongst others, the vision also includes facilitating trade, financial cooperation, and `people to people bonds’ (cultural and academic exchanges). With considerable branch presence in the B&R countries and substantial on-the-ground experience, Standard Chartered is well positioned to provide governments and clients on how best to benefit from China’s ongoing investment and trade’.
It was pointed out that more than 60 per cent of Standard Chartered’s global markets across Africa, Asia and the Middle East stand to benefit from China’s B&R initiative — 25 of the Group’s 72 markets are in Africa and the Middle East.
The B&R initiative can facilitate finance for Pakistan’s key infrastructural development projects, while encouraging cross-border economic and trade partnerships for the two regions as a whole, not only with China, but also with those markets positioned along the B&R route. Shahzad Dada, Chief Executive Officer, Standard Chartered Pakistan added, “The bank has more than 150 years of experience and a well-established network across Asia, Africa and the Middle East. “Standard Chartered has the products and expertise to support the internationalisation of the Renminbi, and the development opportunities which the `Belt and Road’ initiative brings to a number of economies where we operate.” He said that the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) offers huge opportunities for Pakistan. Standard Chartered views the country’s economy positively and believes that investment and capital will grow with the implementation of CPEC projects, he added. “This roadshow emphasises our promise to be `Here for good’, while demonstrating our capabilities in cementing existing partnerships and forging new business CPEC opportunities across Pakistan,” he said.
Standard Chartered’s delegation for the roadshow comprises relevant and diverse expertise which covers the spectrum of China-Africa / China-Middle East/ China- Pakistan businesses, from currency management, finance structuring, FX management, to trade finance and other investment opportunities, the statement added.