Industrial and Commercial Bank of China launches in Canada

TORONTO, July 6 /CNW/ - Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (the Bank Group) announced today that it will begin retail and corporate banking operations under the banner Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (Canada) (the Bank). The Bank will provide a business platform for the Bank Group to further expand into the Canadian market and, along with the New York branch, further strengthen the Bank Group's North American presence.

In January of this year, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China completed the acquisition of 70 percent of The Bank of East Asia (Canada). With today's announcement, all former BEA (Canada) branches, four in Toronto and two in Vancouver, will be converted to offices of Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (Canada). The new Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (Canada) will have a client base of around 10,000 retail and corporate customers.

Mr. Jiang Jianqing, Chairman of the Bank Group, noted that Canada was one of the most important markets in the world. "One of Canada's strengths is the country's advanced and prudent financial regulatory system. With such network in place, I am confident in the growth opportunities for our Canadian subsidiary in the years to come."

The launch of the Bank marks the beginning of the expansion of the Bank Group's branch network in Canada. The Bank will capitalize on the group's cutting edge information technology platform to bring its new online banking system to Canadian customers. As well, The Bank will work with the Bank Group's networks worldwide, including those in China, to offer a one-stop shop for multinational financial services to clients in both China and Canada.

China and Canada have strong complementary economies. Bilateral trade reached US$34.52 billion in 2008, surpassing the goal affirmed by the two nations' leaders in September 2005 to top US$30 billion in 2010. China is now Canada's second largest trading partner, third largest export market and second largest import market. Along with the rapid growth of trading in goods, more Chinese enterprises are now investing in Canada, adding fresh momentum to the two nations' economic and trade co-operation.

Boasting the largest market capitalization, highest revenue and most client deposits among global commercial banks, ICBC pursues a multinational operational strategy and has actively followed its clients in "going abroad." The launch of the Bank has built a new bridge for further economic and trade co-operation between China and Canada, promoting the business development of Chinese and Canadian enterprises.

There are now 1.4 million ethnic Chinese residing in Canada, 60,000 Chinese students receiving education in Canada, and an increasing number of Chinese visitors choosing Canada as their tourism destination. The huge potential demand for China-related financial services presents a great business opportunity to the Bank. To this end, the Bank will capitalize on it parent's vast service network and advanced information technology platform, both in China and globally, to offer innovative financial products and provides comprehensive financial services in Canada to ethnic Chinese, Chinese students and visitors.

Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Limited was established on January 1, 1984. As China's largest commercial bank that enjoys a solid client base and possesses leading information technology, it offers a diversified range of banking products and occupies a leading position in major business areas in China. Since its dual listing in Shanghai and Hong Kong, ICBC has continually enhanced its operational management standards and profitability. It has become the largest commercial bank in terms of market capitalization, profitability, client deposits and brand value. In recent years, it has actively pursued an international operational strategy through organic growth as well as mergers and acquisitions. In its efforts to upgrade its multinational financial services capabilities, ICBC has accelerated its foreign presence and widened its business scope. As of today, ICBC has set up 175 foreign branches in 22 countries and regions. . Furthermore, it has agency ties with 1,422 banks from 128 countries and regions. The global network of financial services has formed a well-positioned, multi-channel platform that covers international financial centres and China's major economic and trading partners.

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For further information: For further information: Media Contacts: Focus Communications Inc., 905 305 0308, Loretta Lam, ext 208, email:; Hugh Cameron, Mobile: 416 616 7578, email:

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