RMB internationalisation stalls in 2016
SWIFT RMB Tracker shows an overall decline in RMB payments by value for 2016, closing out the year in sixth place among currencies used for international payments
This press release is also available in Spanish.
Brussels, 26 January 2017 – SWIFT data shows that compared to 2015 the payments value for the RMB decreased by as much as 29.5% in 2016. The RMB’s share as an international payments currency dropped from 2.31% in December 2015 to 1.68% in December 2016, ending the year as the sixth most active currency for international payments.
RMB payments value decreased by 15.08% in December 2016 compared to November 2016, whilst overall, payments value for all currencies increased slightly by 0.67%.
“The decrease in RMB usage for payments in December may be attributed to a convergence of several events: the slowdown of the Chinese economy, the volatility of the RMB exchange rate and regulatory measures on capital outflows,” says Michael Moon, Head of Payments Markets, APAC, SWIFT. “Despite the slowdown, RMB internationalisation will continue to benefit from major financial infrastructure milestones, such as CIPS for cross-border clearing and additional RMB offshore clearing centres. These efforts, combined with a Memorandum of Understanding that was signed in 2016 between CIPS and SWIFT to grow payments traffic outside of China, will have a positive impact on the continued internationalisation of the currency.
The decrease in RMB usage for payments in December may be attributed to a convergence of several events: the slowdown of the Chinese economy, the volatility of the RMB exchange rate and regulatory measures on capital outflows.
Michael Moon, Head of Payments Markets, APAC, SWIFT
About SWIFT and RMB Internationalisation
Since 2010, SWIFT has actively supported its customers and the financial industry regarding RMB internationalisation through various publications and reports. Through its Business Intelligence Solutions team, SWIFT publishes key adoption statistics in the RMB Tracker, insights on the implications of RMB internationalisation, perspectives on RMB clearing and offshore clearing guidelines, supports bank’s commercial RMB product launches and provides in-depth analysis and business intelligence, as well as engaging with offshore clearing centres and the Chinese financial community to support the further internationalisation of the RMB.
The SWIFT network fully supports global RMB transactions, and its messaging services enable Chinese character transportation via Chinese Commercial Code (CCC) in FIN or via Chinese characters in MX (ISO 20022 messages). It offers a suite of dedicated RMB business intelligence products and services to support financial institutions and corporates. In addition, SWIFT collaborates with the community to publish the Offshore and Cross-Border RMB Best Practice Guidelines, which facilitate standardised RMB back office operations.
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