UK becomes second largest offshore RMB clearing centre – SWIFT

According to SWIFT’s latest RMB tracker, the United Kingdom has become the second largest offshore RMB clearing centre, as the UK’s RMB payments value rose by 21% between March 2014 and March 2016.

The United Kingdom lags behind Hong Kong in the ranking. Singapore overtook the United Kingdom in February 2014, but the trend began to reverse as of January 2016. Hong Kong still remains the world’s largest offshore RMB centre, processing 72.5% of all RMB payments, followed by United Kingdom with a share of 6.3% and Singapore with 4.6%.

SWIFT report shows that 40% of all payments made between United Kingdom and China/Hong Kong are exchanged in RMB.

Stephen Gilderdale, Managing Director, UK, Ireland & Nordics at SWIFT, says,

“Since the China Construction Bank (London branch) became a clearing bank in the United Kingdom in June 2014, there has been a steady growth of RMB payments between the United Kingdom and China/Hong Kong. Offshore RMB clearing centres are driving greater use of the currency in global trade, and countries such as the United Kingdom, are reaping the benefits.”


Regarding the international payments currency ranking, in March 2016, the RMB retained its position as the fifth most active currency for global payments by value with a share of 1.88%, a slight increase from February 2016. Overall, RMB payments value grew by 18.46% compared to February 2016, whilst in general all payments currencies increased by 10.67%.


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