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Bank of China to open first branch in Pakistan

Bank of China to open first branch in Pakistan

Bank of China (BoC) will be setting up its first branch in Pakistan as it has received its banking license from the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP).

Finance Minister Ishaq Dar met with Bank of China Chairman Tian Guo Li in Beijing, where the latter was invited to visit Pakistan to inaugurate bank's first branch in Pakistan, expected to be set up in Karachi.

The bank is expected to commence its business after meeting regulatory requirements, and is expected to start its operations in branch mode, said a statement released by SBP.

The SBP statement added that BoC is a subsidiary of China Central Huijin, an investment arm of the Chinese government.

BoC operates on mainland China and has footprints in more than 50 countries across the globe, with 19 of those countries located across China's 'One Belt One Road' initiative.

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At the end of 2015, the bank had a total of 11,633 institutions including 644 in countries outside China.

BoC is the fourth and fifth largest global bank in terms of Tier-1 capital and total assets respectively. It is listed on the Shanghai Stock Exchange and the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.

The bank will initially bring $50 million to fulfill the minimum capital requirements of SBP.

The long term objective of Bank of China is to increase its market penetration by opening branches in major cities of Pakistan while aiming to be one of the largest foreign banks in the country.

The bank aims to provide differential and specialised banking services to effectively serve financing needs of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) related projects by leveraging on its experience and global technology platforms.

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The bank is the second Chinese bank entering the Pakistani market.

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