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SMBC ties up with major Hong Kong bank.

TOKYO, Nov. 17 Kyodo

Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp. said Monday it has signed a strategic alliance agreement with the Bank of East Asia, the biggest independent local bank in Hong Kong, to reinforce services for its corporate clients in Hong Kong and mainland China.

Under the agreement, SMBC aims at enhancing its customer support by using BEA's vast business network in Hong Kong and mainland China, said the core banking unit of Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc.

The two banks will also explore further opportunities for collaboration in business areas such as trade finance, SMBC said.

The move is part of the Japanese bank's efforts to strengthen its businesses in Asia, following the signing of an accord with the Asian Development Bank in October to evenly share the risk of financing and guaranteeing trade transactions by developing Asian countries.

The latest accord also follows SMBC's investment in South Korea's KB Financial Group, the holding company of Kookmin Bank, the largest commercial bank in South Korea in terms of assets, and the opening of a branch in Vietnam's capital city of Hanoi.
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Publication:Asian Economic News
Date:Nov 18, 2008
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