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Home > Ambassador Liu > Remarks
Remarks by H.E. Ambassador Liu Xiaoming at the celebration of the 90th anniversary of Bank of China London Branch: Forge ahead towards a Brighter Future
Guildhall, City of London, 22 November 2019
2019/11/23

Executive Vice President Sun Yu,

Lord Mayor William Russell,

General Manager Fang Wenjian,

Chairman Stephen Perry,

My Lords,

Ladies and Gentlemen:

Good evening!

It is a real delight to join you at today’s celebration. On behalf of the Chinese Embassy in the UK, I would like to extend my warmest congratulations on the 90th anniversary of Bank of China London Branch!

Ninety years ago, Bank of China set up its first overseas office in London. It was the pioneer of modern Chinese banking sector. It was the very first step in a long journey in which Chinese companies explored the global market and made solid footprints.

For 90 years, Bank of China London Branch has been a participant in the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.

During the Chinese people’s war against Japanese aggression, Bank of China London Branch issued government bond to raise fund in the overseas Chinese community for the resistance. This effort was a valuable contribution to the struggle of the Chinese nation to “get back on her feet”.

Since China began reform and opening up, Bank of China London Branch has been leveraging its strength to facilitate foreign trade and extend the global reach of China’s financial sector. These efforts have given the Chinese nation powerful impetus on its way towards prosperity and greatness.

For 90 years, Bank of China London Branch has cultivated the British market and provided services to the local people. In this process, it has explored new frontiers and grown stronger. It has become a champion for China-UK financial cooperation and a contributor to the prosperity and development of the local community.

After 90 years of persistent and strenuous efforts, this proud institution is standing at a new historical juncture. I would like to share with you my three hopes for Bank of China London Branch.

First, I hope it will continue to be a leader in China-UK cooperation.

At the opening ceremony of the second China International Import Expo early this month, President Xi Jinping delivered an important speech. He proposed that all countries work together to build an open world economy through cooperation, with innovation and for mutual benefits.

Over the years, Bank of China London Branch has been a pioneer in promoting cooperation between Chinese financial institutions and their British counterparts. It has created many “first’s”.

  • It was entrusted by the Ministry of Finance of China to issue the first RMB sovereign bond overseas.
  • It joined hands with Bank of England to issue the first RMB-denominated sovereign bond of a Western country.
  • It listed China’s first green bond at the London Stock Exchange.
  • And it was the first Asian bank to take the chair of the Association of Foreign Banks in the UK in its 70 years of history.

It is my hope that Bank of China will build on these achievements and continue to strive forward. I am sure you will continue to be a leading Chinese financial institution in the global market.

Second, I hope Bank of China London Branch will continue to be a promoter of China-UK financial cooperation.

London is a world financial centre. Thirty-five large-scale Chinese financial institutions have set up businesses here. China-UK financial cooperation enjoys a strong momentum. There is enormous potential in the areas of FinTech, inclusive finance and green finance.

China is accelerating the opening up of its financial sector. It will abolish completely the business scope restrictions on foreign financial institutions in China such as banks, securities firms and fund management companies. This will create new opportunities and new space for China-UK financial cooperation.

It is my hope that Bank of China London Branch will continue to leverage its strengths, create more highlights of cooperation, and play a bigger role in advancing China-UK financial cooperation.

Third, I hope Bank of China London Branch will continue to be a contributor to China-UK relations.

In 1950s, Bank of China London Branch facilitated the “icebreaking” trade between China and Britain. In recent years, it initiated the China Chamber of Commerce in the UK, which has become a powerful voice for the Chinese companies here in this country and has done a great deal in promoting China-UK business cooperation.

Moreover, Bank of China London Branch has never stopped giving back to the local community. In the past three years, it has paid 230 million pounds in tax and offered more than 600 jobs. It has also engaged in charity works and enriched cultural diversity of this international metropolis by supporting Chinese culture events.

I hope that Bank of China London Branch will continue to focus on local business, improve local services and give back to the local community. I am sure you will continue to serve as a shiny name card for China, help more British people understand China’s stories and build a closer bond between our two countries.

Ladies and Gentlemen:

This year marks the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China. It is also the 65th anniversary of China-UK diplomatic relationship at the chargé d’affaires level.

The world is undergoing profound changes unseen in a century. The international financial market is faced with new prospects. China is opening its market at a higher level.

I am sure Bank of China London Branch will continue to display its outstanding vision, seize the opportunities, move along with the trend of our times and take the lead in open cooperation.

I look forward to your new, greater contribution to promoting the China-UK “Golden Era” and to realising the Chinese Dream of national rejuvenation!

Thank you!

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