Singapore’s Ministry of Trade and Industry is set to grant full banking licences to two Chinese banks.

A source at a Chinese bank tells GTR that the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) and Bank of China (BOC) will be the two banks granted the qualifying full bank licences (QFB).

QFBs gain greater banking benefits in Singapore and have the option to conduct a full range of banking businesses, including trade finance.

The decision is expected to enhance Singapore’s banking services cooperation with Beijing under the existing China-Singapore free trade agreement. Once the licences have been approved, the ICIC and BOC will process all applications made by selected Singapore banks to establish branches and sub-branches in China.

Singapore’s Ministry of Trade and Industry will also authorise one Chinese bank as a clearing bank for Renminbi in Singapore.