Chinese Bankers Club Luxembourg: Building the bridge of Sino-Luxembourg cooperation
Chinese Bankers Club Luxembourg aims to help Chinese banks to further internationalize, diversify and expand their business. The Chinese Bankers Club also supports its members’ banks in actively integrating into local life through various activities and events.
Can you describe the Chinese Bankers Club Luxembourg in a few words?
The original idea of setting up Chinese Bankers Club Luxembourg in 2016 arose from the changing landscape which has seen the increasing presence of Chinese banks that have chosen Luxembourg as their European hub. The Club presently has a total of seven members. Bank of China holds the first Chairmanship due to its initiative in setting up the Club. The aims of the Club are primarily to promote Sino-Luxembourg cooperation, to facilitate exchanges between the two countries and local banks in terms of economy, technology, personnel, cultural information, industry news, compliance requirements, etc. The Club also provides support to its member banks in actively integrating into local life through various activities and events.
“Chinese Bankers Club Luxembourg helps two countries to build longstanding relationship.”
How do you analyze the recent evolution of relationships between Luxembourg and Chinese banks?
The relationship has been an amicable one for the past 40 years. What we have been witnessing is a longstanding relationship that has strengthened even more in recent years. Indisputably, Luxembourg’s social and political stability, strategic position at the heart of Europe, financial ecosystem, modern and continuously updated legal and regulatory framework, multi-lingual workforce, leading role in green bonds and ever-growing Renminbi business, all make it more attractive for Chinese banks to enter the market and to choose Luxembourg as an entry gate into the EU market. Operating in Luxembourg, in turn, helps Chinese banks with further internationalization, diversification and expansion of their business. Acting as a bridge between China, Luxembourg and the EU economies, Chinese banks also promote more businesses and investment opportunities with China, which help to contribute positively to Luxembourg’s economy and its standing as an important international financial center. For example, the LuxSE has, this year, launched a Green Bond Channel in partnership with the Shanghai Stock Exchange. In addition, the Chinese banks are integrating into the local community, not only by establishing business relationship with corporate entities, but also by sponsoring cultural and sporting events and by bringing job opportunities to the local market. From both sides, the attraction is mutual, and will continue to be so, not only with the Chinese banks, but also Chinese companies, including fintech firms.
What perspective do you anticipate in the mid to long term?
For many Chinese investors, Luxembourg is an effective gateway to the single market of the EU (as some may say, this is especially so after Brexit). Likewise, as the second largest global investment fund center, Luxembourg also has more than half of the European funds with investment into China domiciled here. While the number of Chinese banks and companies in Luxembourg is on the rise, we have also seen desire for closer ties from both sides and pro-active cooperation. With the increasing volume of bilateral trade and investment, the banks are playing a greater role in the deepening of economic and trading relations. One of the many examples I can think of is the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that was signed last year between ABBL and China Banking Association (CBA), which signifies the prospect of long-term cooperation between the two banking sectors for mutual market development. We expect this trend will continue in the mid to long term.