Kasikornbank plans to open first branch in Vietnam. The move comes as other Thai banks have expanded in Southeast Asia.
Vietnam houses nine foreign-owned banks, about 50 foreign bank branches, more than 50 representative offices of foreign credit institutions and many foreign-owned finance companies.
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Kasikornbank, the second-largest lender by assets, said on Monday it plans to open a branch in Vietnam’s commercial hub of Ho Chi Minh City in the third quarter of this year to tap into the country’s growth, Reuters reported.
“Attention is now focused on Vietnam as a regional investment hub that has attracted the world’s leading companies – including those from Thailand – thanks to its strong economy,” said executive vice-president Pattarapong Kanhasuwan, noting its recovery should be helped by the country’s success containing Covid-19.
The move comes as other Thai banks have expanded in Southeast Asia.
Rival lender, Siam Commercial Bank last month became the first Thai bank to obtain a banking licence in Myanmar.
In 2019, Bangkok Bank made a $2.7-billion acquisition of Indonesia’s PT Bank Permata.
Kasikornbank’s new branch, which gained regulatory approval in January, will provide services to local customers, including Thai and foreign businesses investing in Vietnam.
It is targeting lending of 10 billion baht in its first year of operations, while investing in startups in digital technology, it said in a statement.
Other services planned for the future include retail banking, such as deposits and personal loans, according to Reuters.
As of December 2030, Vietnam houses nine foreign-owned banks, about 50 foreign bank branches, more than 50 representative offices of foreign credit institutions and many foreign-owned finance companies.
Many foreign banks have been pumping more capital to expand their footprint and increase their share in the domestic market, especially in the retail banking sector.
The market also saw a series of foreign banks enlarge their branch networks. Shinhan Bank, for example, opened three new branches and three new transaction offices in Ho Chi Minh City, Danang, Hanoi, Haiphong, Ha Nam and Binh Duong, beefing up its Vietnamese branch anh transaction office network to 36, whilst Malaysia’s Public Bank Vietnam Ltd. also expanded its foothold by opening five more branches and transaction offices, raising the total to 18 outlets.
($1 = 30.0200 baht)
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