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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs     30 May  2016  

Thai Siam Commercial Bank targets growth abroad

May 27 2016

THAILAND’S Siam Commercial Bank (SCB) plans to open its first branch in China next year as it seeks to grow its nascent international portfolio to around five per cent of total loans by 2025, a top executive said yesterday.

Thai banks are seeking opportunities overseas in response to limited growth potential at home due to the sluggish domestic economy that has led to slow loan growth and rising bad debts.

SCB, Thailand’s third-largest lender, is also keen to expand in Indonesia, Vietnam and Myanmar, Kamalkant Agarwal, the head of international banking at SCB, told Reuters.

The Chinese branch would target clients seeking to make foreign direct investment (FDI) in Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam, he said.

SCB, which has a representative office in Beijing, has submitted a proposal to open its first Chinese branch in Shanghai, Manop Sangiambut, executive vice president for the China division, said.

The lender has so far approved US$300 million in loans to Chinese customers, Manop said.

As the economy slows in China, investors are expected to increasingly target the fast-growing economies of Southeast Asia.

“China’s outward foreign direct investment will increase and we expect Thailand to be one of the beneficiaries,” said Kamalkant.

SCB is a relatively recent entrant to the international banking scene, and its foreign portfolio stands at around 0.2 per cent of the total, he said.

The Thai bank opened a branch in Vietnam earlier this year, and expects to expand there, he said. Fast-growing Vietnam is attracting rising FDI and has signed up to a number of free trade agreements that should boost it more.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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