GTR is pleased to announce the results of its GTR Asia Leaders in Trade 2014 awards.
This year there have been changes to the way GTR judges its leaders in trade winners, and the magazine’s Asia editorial board members were asked to vote in favour of the leading banks, financial institutions, insurers and brokers in the Asian trade finance market.
GTR ASIA WINNERS ANNOUNCED
▪ BEST STRUCTURED COMMODITY FINANCE BANK IN ASIA PACIFIC /STANDARD CHARTERED
▪ BEST EXPORT FINANCE BANK IN ASIA PACIFIC /CITI
▪ BEST COMMODITY FINANCE BANK IN ASIA PACIFIC /BNP PARIBAS
▪ BEST TRADE OUTSOURCING BANK IN ASIA PACIFIC /WELLS FARGO
▪ BEST TRADE CREDIT AND POLITICAL RISK INSURANCE BROKER IN ASIA PACIFIC /AON
▪ BEST TRADE CREDIT INSURER IN ASIA PACIFIC /EULER HERMES
▪ BEST POLITICAL RISK INSURER IN ASIA PACIFIC /ACE
▪ BEST EXPORT CREDIT AGENCY IN ASIA PACIFIC /NEXI
▪ BEST ALTERNATIVE TRADE FINANCIER IN ASIA PACIFIC /FALCON GROUP AND EUROFIN ASIA
▪ BEST TRADE FINANCE LAW FIRM IN ASIA PACIFIC /DENTONS
▪ BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN SINGAPORE /DBS
▪ BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN VIETNAM /TECHCOMBANK
▪ BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF CHINA /BANK OF CHINA
▪ BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN MALAYSIA /MAYBANK
▪ BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN INDONESIA /BANK MANDIRI
▪ BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN INDIA /STATE BANK OF INDIA
▪ BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN SOUTH KOREA / KOREAN EXCHANGE
▪ BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN THAILAND /SIAM COMMERCIAL BANK
▪ BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN TAIWAN /CHINATRUST COMMERCIAL
▪ BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN THE PHILIPPINES /BANCO DE ORO
▪ BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN NEW ZEALAND /ANZ
▪ BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN AUSTRALIA /WESTPAC
▪ BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN JAPAN /BTMU
▪ BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN MONGOLIA /TRADE AND DEVELOPMENT
BANK OF MONGOLIA
▪ BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN BANGLADESH /EASTERN BANK
▪ BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN PAKISTAN /HABIB BANK
▪ BEST TRADE FINANCE SOFTWARE PROVIDER IN ASIA PACIFIC /CHINA SYSTEMS
BEST STRUCTURED COMMODITY FINANCE BANK IN ASIA PACIFIC /Standard Chartered
Once again, Standard Chartered has been named the region’s best structured commodity finance bank – continuing its success when voting was completed by editorial board members only.
Ashutosh Kumar, Standard Chartered’s global head of trade finance and regional head of transaction banking (South Asia), says: “Standard Chartered’s DNA is in facilitating trade across Asia, Africa and the Middle East and we are truly delighted to win GTR’s award. This award is testament to not just our deep understanding and experience of these markets and the corresponding commodity flows but also of the strong relationships that we have built with our clients over many years.”
“We continue to build on these strengths and have in recent years also built the award-winning collateral management system which enables us to efficiently risk manage the underlying collateral as well as other bespoke operations capabilities focussed specifically at commodity players in our markets.”
BEST EXPORT FINANCE BANK IN ASIA PACIFIC /Citi
Citi has once again scooped the prize for best export finance bank in Asia Pacific – this time as voted for by the GTR Asia editorial board. “This award recognises our strengths and ability to provide innovative solutions to our clients by harnessing our global network and partnerships,” says Sanjay Tandon, Asia trade head of treasury and trade solutions at the bank.
Export finance continues to be at the forefront of Citi’s strategy across the region. The bank’s export and agency platform allows clients to leverage its long-standing relationships with over 65 agencies globally, including export credit agencies, development finance institutions and multilateral agencies. The bank prides itself on delivering structured solutions that are not limited to standalone financings, but often incorporate larger syndications, capital markets and embedded structured derivatives. In the last 12 months, Citi has continued to deliver innovative export financing solutions that enable companies to balance their working capital optimisation objectives with the need to stabilise their global supply chains.
“The depth of solutions offered by Citi have ensured that our clients have access to entire spectrum of financing options covering their short-term and long-term financing needs,” says Tandon.
BEST COMMODITY FINANCE BANK IN ASIA PACIFIC /BNP Paribas
BNP Paribas has been voted the best commodity finance bank in Asia Pacific. Demand for commodities in the region has continued to grow and the French bank has been one of the frontrunners in the region.
Over the last year, BNP Paribas has rolled out a new electronic offering to enable corporate clients to control all their treasury business operations from a single platform.
The multi-product, application-based platform – known as Centric – was launched in Hong Kong and Singapore, before being rolled out across Asia Pacific. Centric has allowed the bank’s corporate clients access to a wide range of transaction banking and flow product applications including cash management, trade finance, foreign exchange hedging and research products and services.
Eric Raynaud, the bank’s Asia Pacific CEO, says: “The launch of Centric represents another significant step forward in the provision of products and services to our corporate clients and underpins our commitment to the Asia Pacific region in support of our strategic growth plans. The corporate market is a key pillar of our business and, through the provision of Centric, we can continue to support the diverse, evolving needs of our local and multinational client base.”
In March, BNP Paribas opened a training centre in Singapore, exemplifying the group’s 2014 to 2016 strategy in the region in terms of growth and human resources.
BEST TRADE OUTSOURCING BANK IN ASIA PACIFIC /Wells Fargo
Wells Fargo has snatched the award from JP Morgan to this year be crowned the best trade outsourcing bank in Asia Pacific
Economies of scale are important to succeed in the outsourcing space, and Wells Fargo continues to strategically grow in this segment by leveraging its size and scale.
Over the past 12 months, the bank has continued investing in technology and human capital to support the growth of its trade outsourcing business.
“The trade outsourcing business is an important part of Wells Fargo’s trade finance business, and we are committed to serving the needs of our customers in this space. We have a diversified mix of customers globally in this space,” says Daniel Son, senior vice-president, head of trade, Asia Pacific.
“More and more, our customers are not just looking for technology and processing services. They want thought leadership. They want innovation. They want us to help connect the dots so they can provide end-to-end services to their customers,” he adds.
BEST TRADE CREDIT AND POLITICAL RISK INSURANCE BROKER IN ASIA PACIFIC /Aon
Aon Risk Solutions has been voted the best trade credit and political risk insurance broker in Asia Pacific for 2014 by the GTR Asia editorial board.
Head of trade credit at Aon in Hong Kong, Hugh Burke, sees the win as reward for the hard work done in restructuring the Asia trade credit and political risk team over the last few years. “We’ve gone through a comprehensive restructuring throughout 2012 and 2013,” he tells GTR.
“We have renewed our focus on providing ‘best in class’ service to both clients and prospects alike. We understand clients’ needs and tailor solutions to empower the growth, profit and continuity of their businesses; these are our core values and have become the minimum expectation of our insurer partners across the region,” he says.
“Aon is honored to accept this award as we are extremely pleased that our efforts have been recognised by the GTR board; we appreciate the continued support of GTR and the larger trade finance community,” adds Burke.
BEST TRADE CREDIT INSURER IN ASIA PACIFIC /Euler Hermes
Euler Hermes has been voted the best trade credit insurer in Asia Pacific by the GTR Asia editorial board, continuing the success of last year’s win in the same category.
Last year, Euler Hermes’ regional business in Asia Pacific grew by almost 24% more than the previous year. The first quarter of 2014 alone saw business in the region grow by a further 24% compared with the same period in 2013.
“As the world’s leading provider of trade-related insurance solutions, we have invested heavily in recent years in improving our service and product offer in Asia Pacific,” says commercial head of Euler Hermes Asia Pacific, Anil Berry.
“Over the past two years we have been pursuing a strategy focused on banks and partners, developing new markets – such as Indonesia – and innovating new products providing additional capacity.”
Berry adds: “This award shows we have taken the right approach and that our investments are now producing the intended returns for us and – more importantly – for our clients and partners.”
BEST POLITICAL RISK INSURER IN ASIA PACIFIC /Ace
GTR Asia editorial board members have voted Ace Global Markets the best political risk insurer in Asia Pacific, marking the third time the firm has won this award.
Political upheaval in Thailand, a new government in Indonesia and increasing tensions between China and Japan over the disputed Senkaku/Diaoyu islands emphasise the importance of political risk cover for the Asian trade finance community in 2014.
Ace’s political risk and credit regional manager for Asia Pacific, Julian Hudson, believes diversity is the key to Ace’s success in the region. “Our portfolio is nicely balanced and we continue to diversify our suite of products and strengthen our underwriting capabilities in the region,” he tells GTR.
“The past year was another record year for our business with the political risk book continuing to perform exceptionally well. We are better placed than ever to service our brokers and clients in the region and are very much looking forward to the next 12 months,” he adds.
BEST EXPORT CREDIT AGENCY IN ASIA PACIFIC /Nexi
GTR Asia’s editorial board members have voted Japan’s Nippon Export and Investment Insurance (Nexi) as the best ECA in Asia Pacific in 2014.
Nexi’s chief representative in Singapore, Sato Tatsuo, says: “Business activities of Japanese companies or their subsidiaries have become increasingly active in Southeast Asia, while a number of factors affecting country risk persist in these regions.”
“The role of ECAs remains large and Nexi spares a large amount of resources for providing insurance coverage in these regions. Demand for financial resources will grow further, and Nexi would like to strengthen support for the business of Japanese companies and their subsidiaries and also contribute to the economic development in these regions,” adds Tatsuo.
BEST ALTERNATIVE TRADE FINANCIER IN ASIA PACIFIC /Falcon Group and Eurofin Asia
GTR’s award for best alternative finance provider (previously ‘best trade finance boutique’) has been tied this year, with Falcon Group and Eurofin Asia being awarded joint winners.
Falcon Group has had another record year, exceeding US$2.3bn in turnover and expanding its global reach, says Andrew Church, Singapore regional head. “This organic growth has been largely in Asia, a key region for the group, with a new base in Shanghai adding to existing offices in Jakarta and Singapore.
“Many corporates need alternative solutions such as those provided by Falcon to help them diversify funding options and access capital,” adds Church. “What makes them want Falcon Group – and therefore what makes Falcon so successful – is the bespoke nature of its solutions. Our ability to tailor such solutions to clients’ needs, using in-depth local knowledge and global reach, sets us apart.”
Francois Dotta, head of merchant finance at EuroFin Asia, says: “We’re very pleased and honoured to win the GTR Asia Leaders in Trade Award. This distinction is a great recognition of our identity and accomplishments over the last 10 years in Asia Pacific.
“Since 2006 we worked with about 100 SMEs/SMIs in the raw material/commodity sector across geographies and financed close to US$4bn of commodity trade flows through our trade finance funds, including over US$800mn in 2013.”
BEST TRADE FINANCE LAW FIRM IN ASIA PACIFIC /Dentons
The GTR Asia editorial board members have voted Dentons as best trade finance law firm in Asia Pacific for 2014.
As well as a continued focus on its Asian client offerings in key markets such as Southeast Asia, China and India, in the last year, Dentons has supported banking clients as they move into challenging new markets in the region.
Matthew Cox, a partner at Dentons in Singapore, highlights the law firm’s successful activities last year: “In Asia we have advised on a range of structured trade transactions from the very large to the very small and have supported our banking clients as they move into new markets and as they wrestle with the challenges of new regulations.”
“A particular highlight in the last year has been our work on innovative transactions in the fascinating new market of Myanmar. Transactions were small in size but very rewarding to work with our clients to overcome unusual hurdles caused by the unique circumstances of that jurisdiction,” says Cox. Dentons also advised lenders dealing with defaults under structured trade deals in Asia.
“We have found that the structured trade finance (STF) product has stood up well to the challenges that banks face when STF transactions run into difficulties,” Cox adds.
BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN SINGAPORE /DBS
GTR has voted DBS Bank as the best local trade finance bank in Singapore.
The bank’s strong understanding of the region has enabled it to provide effective risk mitigating solutions in an environment with more stringent regulatory rules.
Ivone Hodiny, executive director, head of structured trade, commodity and trade finance at DBS Bank, tells GTR: “The trade environment has become increasingly challenging in recent times, with notably more stringent rules set by regulators amongst others. All these mean that banks today are required to have prudent and robust risk management systems and processes in place, including KYC and KYB. However, in spite of these challenges, DBS has emerged as a strong player in trade finance in Asia.”
Over the last three years, “DBS has witnessed a steady growth momentum in earnings across all markets and products for trade finance, with CAGR at 28%. Assets rose 22% year-on-year and total income exceeded SGD1bn for the first time,” adds Hodiny.
“On top of outstanding financials, DBS has also been ranked as within the top three trade finance banks in Asia Pacific by the top 1,000 corporates in a study done by East & Partners, and has received recognition such as ‘Best in working capital and trade finance in Southeast Asia’ and ‘Most innovative transaction bank in Asia Pacific’,” she says.
BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN VIETNAM /Techcombank
Voted best local trade finance bank in Vietnam for the third year in a row, Techcombank is still the only bank in the country with a dedicated transaction banking division.
Commenting on the bank’s strengths compared to its competitors, Dang Tuyet Dung, head of wholesale banking at Techcombank, tells GTR: “Over the last 12 months, Techcombank has introduced new solutions to the trade finance market such as: export factoring, UPAS LC, and LC outsourcing to provide better products at lower cost while increasing the approachability of the bank to our end-customers.”
She adds: “The value of total trade transactions was recorded at almost US$5.5bn in 2013, an increase of 67% from 2009 when the bank started the initiative of transaction banking. We are behind the success story of the companies in key export segments of Vietnam, such as agricultural products and seafood.
“It’s been made even more challenging by the hardening economic environment which sees a rapidly rising number of businesses going bankrupt. However, it’s also where our strengths truly shine as we have weathered it and come out with positive results.”
She discloses the secret to Techcombank’s success: “We always think about our customer, enhance our innovative products, service and business model as well as strengthen our relationship and transaction banking specialist team.”
BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF CHINA /Bank of China
Bank of China (BOC) has been voted top of its class in PRC for the third year running in this year’s GTR Asia Leaders in Trade awards.
A statement from the global trade services department at the bank tells GTR: “Trade services business is considered one of the core competitiveness of Bank of China (BOC).
“As the earliest financial institution in China providing trade services, BOC owns a complete trade services product portfolio, comprehensive expertise and powerful product innovation capability. In 2013, BOC group recorded international settlement volume of US$3.4tn, and cross-border Rmb settlement volume of almost Rmb4tn, both maintaining a leading role in the global banking industry.
“The market share of foreign-currency trade finance held the top position in China’s market and the volume of its two-factor export factoring services kept the No.1 in the global market as well.
“Looking to the future, BOC has chosen providing world-class trade services as one of its key long-term development strategies. It aims to further develop its traditional advantages, continues to expand business scale and consistently provides a full range of high-quality, comprehensive and efficient trade services for all customers in the future.”
BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN MALAYSIA /Maybank
Maybank has now received this award for the fourth consecutive year and Loo Eng Hock, head of transaction banking Malaysia, tells GTR: “This award recognises our leadership and achievements in the trade finance industry in Malaysia where we command a strong market share of 26%.”
In 2013, Maybank launched its supply chain solutions to clients in Malaysia. The key benefit of this solution is that it helps to enhance the liquidity on the balance sheet of the buyers and sellers in a supply chain. Clients may leverage this solution to integrate their existing enterprise resource planning (ERP) system to online trade finance and cash management.
Hock adds: “For inter-Asian trade businesses, our standardised supply chain solution allows them to link to their counterparts in various trade corridors in an efficient and timely manner thus fostering supplier reliability, better pricing and trade terms.”
“Given our strong network, investment in technology and specialised talent, we are confident and well-equipped to support our client’s business globally. Being awarded by GTR is a tribute to our hard work and effort and is proof that we are continuously delivering our promise to our clients by having the right services and solutions in order to remain the best local trade finance bank in Malaysia.”
BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN INDONESIA /Bank Mandiri
Bank Mandiri has this year been voted as the best local trade finance bank in Indonesia.
The bank’s trade finance volume and fee-based income in 2013 displayed a sound performance.While volume increased 24.9% compared to 2012, fee-based income generated from trade finance transactions grew significantly at 30.3% from the previous year.
Kristiyanto Nugroho, assistant vice-president, trade product team, tells GTR: “Our market share in the trade finance business is 31.3% for export transaction, whereas for import transaction is recorded at 32.9%. Currently, Bank Mandiri serves more than 2,300 small, commercial and corporate customers which are actively involved in trade transactions. This figure has increased as much as 66% since 2012.”
Nugroho adds: “Our records show that domestic trade transactions in 2013 more than doubled, an increase of 115.88%, compared to 2012. Therefore, for the past two years, we are more focused on developing strategies and products for the local market.
“In 2013, Bank Mandiri’s supply chain business recorded an amount of US$1.25bn and serves more than 30 principals, 500 distributors and more than 2,400 suppliers.”
“As the only bank in Indonesia who has already registered to Swift’s Trade Service Utility (TSU), Bank Mandiri is capable of facilitating bank payment obligation (BPO) transaction for its customers,” Nugroho explains.
BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN INDIA /State Bank of India
Last year’s winner has reclaimed its title, with GTR Asia’s editorial board members this time voting for the State Bank of India (SBI) as the country’s top local trade finance bank.
SBI is the largest bank in India with 16,439 branches: the state bank commands about 25% of banking market space in India, explains Swaminathan Janakiraman, general manager of global trade services at SBI, to GTR.
“SBI is a pioneer in trade finance with more than 1,000 branches in India currently handling trade business. SBI has a significant overseas presence in 36 countries with 190 offices abroad. A full range of trade finance services is available at 32 of its overseas offices.”
Janakiraman says: “SBI has been the market leader throughout its history of more than 200 years. The bank is investing continuously on upgrading its technology platforms and constantly improving its offerings to its clients.”
In the recent past, the trade portfolio has been the bank’s engine of growth. Janakiraman adds: “The bank has also embarked upon a major upgrade of its trade finance platform by bringing in a state-of-the-art solution to enhance the customer experience and trade product offerings. The bank is active in providing pre and post-shipment export finance, import finance and also has a full suite of trade products and services.”
BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN SOUTH KOREA /Korean Exchange Bank (KEB)
Korean Exchange Bank (KEB) has been voted the best local trade finance bank in South Korea by board members, and receives this award from GTR for the second year in a row. KEB was bought by Hana Financial Group in 2012 and is now the largest foreign exchange bank in South Korea, with the largest range of foreign exchange products.
Hyun Sik Kim, senior manager of KEB’s FI division, believes the key to the bank’s success has been innovation, which over the past year has involved developing new services to corporate clients.
“As the market leader, KEB launched a dedicated consulting centre for helping SMEs in their trade finance business, and offered competitive refinancing rates in close collaboration with global banks, which we have a good relationship with,” he tells GTR.
“We are very pleased to have won this award in the trade finance category,” he adds.
BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN THAILAND /Siam Commercial Bank
GTR Asia’s editorial board members have voted Siam Commercial Bank as the best local trade finance bank in Thailand for 2014, taking the crown from last year’s winner, Bangkok Bank.
Established in 1904, Siam Commercial Bank is Thailand’s oldest bank. It offers a broad range of trade services to its customers including export and import LCs, bills for collection, inward remittances, packing credit and forward exchange bought (FWB).
With the aim of being the best, most trusted universal bank in Thailand, Siam Commercial considers innovation one of its most important values. “We’re continually seeking innovative products and systems that enable us to deliver world class service to our customers,” says a spokesperson from the bank.
“We have a well-established position in Thailand and we’re confident that we successfully address our customer’s toughest challenges. We are the country’s number one trade finance bank.”
BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN TAIWAN /Chinatrust Commercial
Chinatrust Commercial has once again been voted the best local trade finance bank in Taiwan: this time by the GTR Asia board.
One of the largest and most successful banks in Taiwan, Chinatrust now has 147 branches in the country with 5,184 ATMs. With 99 outlets abroad, it claims the title of Taiwan’s most international financial institution.
The bank attests much of its success to deploying and developing technology. Its clients have access to an e-payment system for supply chain finance and the eTrust system for online LC issuance and amendments, making for convenient trade transactions.
In 2014, Chinatrust completed the acquisition of the Tokyo Star Bank. A statement on the bank’s website outlines its vision to become “the most trustworthy bank in the eyes of the customers around the world,” emphasising its brand spirit:
“We are family.”
BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN THE PHILIPPINES /Banco de Oro
The best local trade finance bank in the Philippines, according to GTR Asia’s editorial board, is Banco de Oro Unibank (BDO).
BDO is the largest bank in the country in terms of capital, deposits and assets under management. It has a large distribution network, with more than 800 operating branches. The bank is a member of the SM Group, one of the country’s largest and most successful business conglomerates.
In terms of trade finance, BDO’s offering includes LCs, remittances and insurance and working capital requirements. In February 2014 the bank announced it had signed an agreement to acquire the trust business of Deutsche Bank’s Manila branch.
BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN NEW ZEALAND /ANZ
ANZ has won the award for best local trade finance bank in New Zealand: the first time that GTR has introduced this category.
This accolade is in addition to its position of best overall trade finance bank in Australia and New Zealand for 2013, as voted by GTR’s global and regional editorial boards at the beginning of the year.
lan Huse, head of transaction banking sales, Australia and New Zealand, says that 2013 was a relatively tough economic environment, especially for exporters, because of the stubbornly high Australian dollar, market volatility and overall reduction in commodity prices. “We have found that working capital management is high on the agenda for almost every corporate treasurer, and therefore a trade dialogue has rapidly extended into one about working capital efficiency.”
“As well as this, our structured trade business has also seen some nice growth, especially in the natural resources space, as producers move to manage working capital more efficiently in the environment of greater production and lower prices,” Huse adds.
During the year, the bank became the first Australian bank to be BPO ready and has continued to upgrade its technology by releasing further versions of its online portal.
BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN AUSTRALIA /Westpac
Congratulations go to Westpac for winning the award for best local trade finance bank in Australia. The win is a testament to the strength of relationships that Westpac’s trade team has built with its global customer base.
“It illustrates that our product offering is backed by exceptional operational and service capability,” says Gordon Sparrow, head of trade sales, global transactional services.
Since Australia’s new government came into power, the Australian trade minister Andrew Robb has signed a free trade agreement FTA with South Korea, and indicated a strong intention to sign similar deals with Japan and China, thus opening up additional avenues of business for banks like Westpac.
It has also been reported that the government is working on a comprehensive economic co-operation agreement with India and Indonesia, to be signed after polls are held in both countries this year.
Australia’s trade balance is showing signs of recovery, with a surplus of over A$1bn for both January and February 2014. Whether this growth will be sustainable remains to be seen. “If we’re talking about exporters in particular there are so many forces at play that I don’t think the election in itself has really driven much, other than to create a degree of caution leading up into it. Global commodity prices, the value of the Australian dollar, the slowdown in some of the key export markets that we’re going into; I think all of those things are weightier than the Australian domestic political climate.”
BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN JAPAN /BTMU
The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ has claimed this year’s best local trade finance bank in Japan accolade.
Masashi Onodera, former regional head of Asia Pacific at the bank, tells GTR: “This award validates BTMU’s deep relationships with its global customer base and its strong commitment to trade finance business over the past months.
“We have managed to deliver innovative and relevant solutions to meet our customers’ needs and serve them beyond their expectations. For instance, we are proud to support our prestigious client Reliance Industries in India via a series of financings involving ECAs from Korea, France and UK.
“This recognition illustrates our expertise and capabilities whilst enhances BTMU’s position as the leading bank in Japan as well as in a globally challenging environment with tough competition and rapidly changing regulatory constraints.”
Over the past 12 months, BTMU has signed a number of arrangements.
Recent highlights include the MoUs which have been signed with the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD) and Malaysia’s Halal Industry Development Corporation (HDC).
BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN MONGOLIA /Trade & Development Bank of Mongolia
For the fourth consecutive year, TDB has won the award for best local trade finance bank in Mongolia.
Randolph Koppa, president of TDB, tells GTR: “TDB is the largest bank in the country as measured both by total assets and equity base and is recognised as a bank with the highest net profit.”
In 2013, TDB executed 50% of total foreign remittance and 52% of trade finance-related transactions in Mongolia.
“The bank has been continuously expanding its co-operative relations with large and reputable international banks and institutions,” says Koppa.
TDB is the oldest and the largest corporate bank in Mongolia, and successfully issued the country’s first ever offshore bond, to the tune of Rmb700mn bond and listed on the Singapore Stock Exchange in January this year. “This was the fifth time that TDB tapped the international bond markets as the first and only Mongolian repeat bond issuer,” Koppa explains.
“Despite the slowdown in the country’s economy, the bank’s borrowings from international banks and financial institutions have been significantly increasing, demonstrating the market confidence in TDB’s strategy, financial strength and management, and affirming TDB’s standing in the international markets,” he adds.
BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN BANGLADESH /Eastern Bank
Eastern Bank Limited (EBL) has stopped a hat-trick of wins for Dhaka Bank, by claiming this year’s best local trade finance bank in Bangladesh.
Hassan Rashid, deputy managing director of EBL, tells GTR: “Over the past 22 years our excellent culture and a focused long-term strategy have contributed to our outstanding track record. “Our sustainable growth principle has been the cornerstone of everything that we do. To remain on the growth trajectory we believe that there is no alternative to diversification and innovations of products and services.
In 2013, despite all odds, we offered unique solutions for our customers.”
Rashid adds: “Our ISO 9001:2008 certifications for trade service and service delivery departments are a testimony to the international best practices that we follow at EBL. Awarding EBL as the best local trade finance bank in Bangladesh by GTR provides the undisputed benchmark of our performance in the trade finance area in this increasingly fierce competitive market place.
“EBL is a pioneer among the local banks to develop offshore banking unit and product offerings including bill discounting/financing, bilateral and syndicated term loan, and other products for export processing zone customers and local manufacturers.”
BEST LOCAL TRADE FINANCE BANK IN PAKISTAN /HBL
The GTR Asia editorial board has named HBL Pakistan (formerly Habib Bank) as the best local trade finance bank in Pakistan for 2014: the second year in a row the bank has won the award.
HBL is Pakistan’s largest bank: with a domestic market share of over 40%, it is a major player in the commercial banking sector.
The bank handles 55% of inward foreign remittances and loans to small industries, traders and farmers.
It has a designated trade finance product base for smaller, local clients, in part developed by the International Finance Corporation (IFC).
BEST TRADE FINANCE SOFTWARE PROVIDER IN ASIA PACIFIC /CHINA SYSTEMS
GTR Asia’s editorial board has named China Systems the best trade finance software provider in Asia Pacific.
One of the software provider’s most recognisable solutions is Eximbills V2, an integrated system that automates and audits the complete cycle of trade finance, open account and payment transactions.
One of China Systems’ key achievements this year has been to successfully integrate its Eximbills platform with trade service solutions provider Bolero’s network, enabling banks to receive and send trade messages from their back office directly to their corporate customers.
“Our customers include the largest organisations in trade in areas where trade finance, SCF and payments are critical to their operations,” says regional sales director Digby Bennett.
“Our products hold the largest number of Swift and industry certifications in our chosen technology and business spheres. Quite a number of interesting business areas are addressed by our products, which support multiple time zones, languages, processing styles and currencies all on a single installation.”