Taiwan Overtakes US and Australia as Renminbi Offshore Centre

Taiwan has moved up three positions to fourth out of 136 countries exchanging renminbi (RMB) payments, following a 120% increase of its RMB payments over six months and overtaking the US and Australia in doing so, according to SWIFT’s latest RMB Tracker.

Excluding Hong Kong and China, Taiwan now trails behind France in third position, but remains a long distance away from Singapore (second) and the United Kingdom (first), reports SWIFT. Nearly 44% of all payments made between Taiwan and China/Hong Kong are now exchanged in RMB.

Six months ago, SWIFT’s RMB Tracker reviewed Taiwan’s potential to become the next major offshore RMB clearing centre. At that time, Taiwan was seventh out of 131 countries exchanging RMB payments worldwide with 24% of all payments exchanged between Taiwan and China/Hong Kong made using the currency.

“We’ve been following the RMB developments in Taiwan very closely,” said Lisa O’Connor, RMB director at SWIFT. “These are not surprising growth figures given the historic and increasing level of direct activity between the Chinese mainland and Taiwan.

“Domestic companies in Taiwan are now able to issue RMB-denominated bonds. In February, the Taipei branch of Bank of China [BOC} was assigned as the local RMB clearing bank and the Taiwan Stock Exchange [TWSE] has announced the desire to offer offshore RMB products. All of these positive moves should further support the growth of Taiwan’s RMB payments.”

Launched in September 2011, the SWIFT RMB Tracker provides monthly reporting on key statistics to understand the progress made by RMB towards becoming an international currency.

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