ASIA: UOB Bank to expand its service in Vietnam

Singapore-based United Overseas Bank (UOB) recently announced its success in getting an in-principle foreign - owned subsidiary bank license from the State Bank of Vietnam. The license will allow UOB to broaden its service coverage and product offerings across Vietnam. This approval also marks the first Singaporean bank to obtain such a license from Vietnam’s financial authority.

Currently, UOB has presence in Ho Chi Minch City only. The new license will allow the bank to open branches in other cities, and provide both consumer and business banking products and services. The bank’s spokesperson mentioned that UOB plans to open other branches in northern Vietnam, given the rapid growth of Hanoi, Quang Ninh and Hai Duong. UOB considers Vietnam as an attractive investment destination for businesses and has facilitated around USD 3 billion in foreign direct investment into Vietnam in the last four years.

According to RFi Group data, Singapore remains a key source of investment and accounted for 10% of foreign direct investment into Vietnam in the first half of 2016. Going forward, this newly acquired license will likely expand Singapore’s share of foreign investment into Vietnam.

Source: RFI Group – Vietnam Commercial Banking Council (H1 2016).

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