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Viswanathan Shankar, chief executive officer for the Middle East, Africa, Europe and the Americas at Standard Chartered Plc (STAN), comments on the use of the yuan in international trade and the impact of the European crisis on the bank’s business. He spoke in an interview in Seoul today.
“Ninety percent of global trade is actually paid in two currencies, the U.S. dollar and euro. The renminbi has come up very, very fast and it now accounts for less than 3 or 4 percent of global trade. Still, most use of renminbi is happening in Asia and to some extent in Europe and the Middle East. It’s not yet happening in Africa. We haven’t yet seen a rampant use of renminbi for trade. It’s too early to predict, but it’s going to go up.”
On tighter financing for global projects:
“Western banks excluding Standard Chartered and a few others are becoming capital constrained and dollar constrained. You’re clearly seeing a reduction in the amount of liquidity available for project financing. So financing is going to be a big driver of the ability to execute large projects.”
On how Standard Chartered is benefiting from the Europe crisis:
“Our businesses in Europe and the Americas are actually growing in double digits because more and more European and American companies need Standard Chartered as they do businesses in Asia, the Middle East and Africa. This is not about us helping them do business in Europe and the U.S., it’s about helping them in their growth markets.”
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