One of Portugal’s largest banks Millennium BCP is set to work with the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) across a number of different business lines, including trade finance.

The memorandum of understanding (MoU) signals the strengthening ties between the Chinese and Portuguese banking sectors.

The agreement was signed during Chinese president Hu Jintao’s official visit to Portugal in early November.

Under the terms of the MoU, the banks will cooperate with each other, making use of each others’ banking networks in trade finance, treasury services – money, forex and swaps markets, cash management and international payments in euro and Chinese renminbi, corporate lending, project finance, syndicated loans and investment banking.

Another Portuguese bank Banco BPI also strengthened relations with China by signing a cooperation agreement with Bank of China, during president Hu’s visit.

Under this agreement the two banks will work with each other to develop their mutual business activities in China and Portugal, and in Portuguese-speaking countries such as Angola and Mozambique.

Trade finance was specifically identified as an area of cooperation between the two banks.