Government Savings Bank (GSB), Thailand’s state enterprise bank, has signed a memorandum of understanding with Citigroup in Thailand, for the US bank to help establish its international banking business. GSB and Citigroup have been working together for the last six months with a target live date early in 2007.

Citigroup has provided knowledge and training to GSB and its staff to help establish an international banking business. GSB’s international banking business will offer trade services, international funds transfers and foreign exchange services.

Through the agreement GSB will utilise Citigroup’s global infrastructure and expertise to provide a best in class international banking business with access to over 100 countries. GSB will leverage Citigroup’s award winning internet banking platform, CitiDirect.

Based on Citigroup’s existing HUB processing and online capabilities, GSB will be able to structure a cross-border solution that will achieve synergy between its own domestic strengths and Citigroup’s dominant position in the regional and global international trade business.

Goanpot Asvinvichit, Government Savings Bank president and CEO, says, “We aim to be a competitive, secure and reliable financial institution and as such are seeking ways to improve our business efficiency and coverage both locally and internationally. This partnership with Citigroup will enable us to establish an international business efficiently and cost effectively utilising Citigroup’s global infrastructure and expertise. We hope the benefits from this partnership will not only allow us to attain global reach, but enable us to support our local customers’ international banking requirements.”

Speaking about the partnership, Gary Newman, Citigroup country officer for Thailand, adds, “We are deeply honoured to be awarded this mandate by GSB as their partner of choice. It clearly demonstrates the trust between our two organisations and underlines Citigroup’s leadership in the cash management, trade services and foreign exchange businesses in Asia and globally. We look forward to continuing to work with the Government Savings Bank in Thailand”