China’s ICBC Bank Starts Operations in Peru

The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the world’s biggest bank by assets, has set up shop in Peru, the latest Chinese firm to enter the Andean market.

The ICBC received authorization from Peru’s banking regulator on Wednesday, allowing the Chinese bank to open its office and start doing business.

Eduardo Patsias, the corporate banking manager in Peru for ICBC, said that the company will first focus on corporate clients. It aims to provide loans worth $100 million in its first year in business in Peru.

Many of its clients will likely be Chinese-owned companies that are working in mining and other natural resource sectors, including energy and fishing.

“We are going to deal with important clients that are Chinese as well as Peruvians in foreign trade and in the development of investments and projects in Peru,” daily Gestion reported Patsias as saying.

In South America, the ICBC has operations in Brazil and Argentina.

Chinese companies are heavily investing in Peru, which is rich in natural resources. A number of Chinese-owned firms have mining projects and have recently acquired energy assets and a fishing company.

Chinese demand for Peru’s natural resources has driven the Andean country’s economic growth during the past decade. The recent slowdown in China has also hurt Peru’s economic performance.

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