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Grow your RMB Business with SWIFT data

Banks turn to SWIFT for business intelligence, based on actual transactions, as input for their 2012 payments strategy with China and to grow their Renminbi (RMB) business

Published on 18 Oct 2011

If your bank is active in payments with China, your strategy must take into account the spectacular growth of the use of the Chinese Renminbi (RMB) beyond China’s borders.

Facts not predictions

As we are overflowned with predictions about the RMB, it has become key for banks to find reliable data. Watch Value Analyser is SWIFT’ solution to provide banks with payments traffic data on currency, volume and value for their own traffic, as well as market and country totals, allowing them to calculate market shares and set growth ambitions.

To complement this and for banks that do not have Value Analyser, SWIFT developed a 40-page RMB Business Insights report, that includes 26 tables with actual RMB traffic.

Some highlights:

  1. CNY is now world payments currency #15 as of September 2011 – compared to #21 in June 2011 (and #35 in October 2010), bypassing the Polish Zloty, Turkish Lira, Mexican Peso, Hungarian Forint, South African Rand and New Zealand Dollar;
  2. International RMB payments grew 1,306% between October 2010- September 2011. 82% is processed by Hong Kong, 5% by China and 13% by other countries;
  3. 1,001 financial institutions in 83 countries did business in RMB in September 2011. This is up from 913 financial institutions and 73 countries in June 2011.
  4.  In Q3 2011, we saw - besides China and Hong Kong - significant new RMB payments developments in:
    > Singapore is now the biggest RMB market in Asia Pacific next to Hong Kong. Japan doubled its RMB transactions and Taiwan (finally) started to show significant RMB traffic in September;
    > RMB payments from the United Kingdom grew at 30%, making it “the RMB bridge” to Europe. Another country to highlight is Spain, now the 9th biggest RMB country in the world following a 7-fold growth and propelling the RMB to the 2nd most used currency with China and Hong Kong after the EUR;
    > United States RMB payments doubled, and Canada is on the move as well;
    > While some of China’s other large trading partners like Germany, South Africa, Australia and Latin American countries disappointed in terms of RMB transaction growth.

Given the high interest in this data, SWIFT will also be producing a free monthly “RMB tracker” that will be available upon request as of October 2011.

To obtain a copy of the SWIFT RMB Business Insights report, to subscribe to the free monthly tracker or for more information on Watch Value Analyser, please contact swiftforbanks@swift.com.

You can also attend one of our complementary webinars on “Growing your RMB business”:


Since June 2010, corporations anywhere in the world can settle in RMB and this has contributed to the spectacular growth in RMB denominated payments. For example, between October 2010- September 2011, international RMB payments grew by 1,306 percent.

Both Chinese and non-Chinese banks involved in global trade with China will feel the impact of the internationalisation of the Chinese currency on their business, as documented in the white paper recently released by SWIFT with the contribution of Bank of China, Citi, Deutsche Bank, HSBC, ICBC and Standard Chartered.