Bank of Ireland offers customers payments in Chinese Yuan

Bank of Ireland offers customers payments in Chinese Yuan

Bank of Ireland today Tuesday, 18th March 2014 announced that it now offers business customers the facility to make payments in Chinese Yuan, the first Irish bank in Ireland to provide this service.  Previously, international investors and companies in Ireland had been unable to receive or make payments in this currency, typically choosing US dollars or euro instead.  The new facility gives both importers and exporters a greater degree of price transparency and potential cost savings.

For importers, buying goods in the local currency can potentially reduce the cost of the goods, where the production and administrative costs of the Chinese company are denominated in Yuan.  For exporters, invoicing their goods and receiving payments in Yuan is now possible.  This supports the company’s international growth, whilst allowing it more flexibility in managing its foreign exchange exposures related to the currency exchange costs incurred in the sales process.

Commenting, Kevin Twomey, Head of Global Customer Business, Bank of Ireland Global Markets, said:  “China’s share of global trade and investment continues to grow and with financial markets looking increasingly at events in China, we expect that the Yuan will ultimately become a major currency – as important as the euro, dollar and sterling.  We want to support our customers looking to trade with China and have been piloting the Chinese Yuan payments facility since last year.  Demand has grown steadily as customers seek to benefit from trading in the local currency.  While the Chinese authorities have some restrictions around the trading of Yuan, our experienced treasury specialists are available to support customers through the process.”

Irish exports to China, the world’s second largest economy, have risen by over 40%, from €251 million in 2010 to €354 million in 20121.  This figure is anticipated to continue growing significantly and may reach approximately €600m by 2016.  According to Enterprise Ireland, current figures suggest that almost 200 Irish companies are exporting to China, with 100 Irish companies having a presence in China.  These range from a one-person office to a large manufacturing presence.  According to industry figures, two-way trade now tops €8 billion.

1  Independent industry figures