Banque pour le Commerce Exterieur Lao Public (BCEL) signed an agreement on Tuesday with Pudian Bank of China to facilitate the opening of accounts and simplify currency exchange between the two banks.
The agreement was signed in Vientiane by BCEL Deputy Director General Mr Vankham Voravong and Deputy Director General of the Pudian Bank of China Mr Zhong Shijun. Other officials from both banks were also in attendance.
BCEL General Managing Director Mr Sonexay Sitphaxay said that previously there was some difficulty exchanging kip into yuan because of Chin a's strict currency controls.
“This agreement will make transactions easier. It will save time and lower the cost because the previous arrangement required money to first be changed into a third currency, which had to be done at the border,” Mr Sonexay said.
“This will help to boost trade and investment between Laos and China, especially in the border provinces.”
“As trade and investment between Laos and China continue to increase, so does the need to change money,” he said.
Mr Zhong Shijun said “The agreement will create a foundation for the growth of both our banks, as well as between our two nations.”
China will open its currency market to international investors in June, he added.
“This is a good start for us and we invite Lao officials to attend the ceremony in China next month,” he said.