July 9, 2015

Pacific Finance & Trade Summit: Update and Key Findings from Industry Leaders

On June 16, 2014, The Province of British Columbia and AdvantageBC hosted the 1st annual Pacific Finance and Trade Summit in Vancouver, BC, which focused attention on the significant opportunities for Vancouver and the rest of Canada to provide timely, efficient and cost-effective trade settlement and investment services using China’s currency – the Renminbi — throughout the Americas.The Summit was attended by some 250 participants from federal and provincial governments, Canadian and Chinese banking and financial industry leaders, legal and accounting professionals, and corporate leaders from companies involved in two-way trade and investment between North America and China.
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The goal of this inaugural Pacific Finance and Trade Summit was three fold: first, to create a broader public and business community awareness of Canada’s designation in November 2014 as the Renminbi Settlement Hub to serve North America; second, to provide detailed information to businesses, financial industry participants and professional services experts about the specific advantages to be gained from making greater use of the Renminbi in North American trade and investment to and from China; and third, to position Canada as the most RMB-friendly jurisdiction in the Americas. In addition, the Summit provided an excellent networking platform for an emerging RMB business community across Canada and across the Pacific to China.
The day-long June 16th Summit featured a powerful line-up of 25 speakers from among the major Canadian and Chinese banks, representatives from Canada’s major financial centres, and experts from key Renminbi market players such as HSBC, Standard Chartered Bank, Export Development Canada, the Toronto Financial Services Alliance, and BC’s Ministry of Finance.
The framework for the day’s discussion focused on several key themes, including:
  • Defining and differentiating how a “Pan-Canadian” RMB Hub for North America can leverage the strengths and unique qualities that each of our major financial centres – Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal and Calgary – bring to the financial services sector in Canada.
  • The roles of both Canadian and Chinese Banks are taking to build the necessary infrastructure, inter-connectivity, and client awareness to ensure businesses will use and benefit from increased RMB use.
  • How Canada’s RMB Hub fits into the expanding global network and functionality of the Chinese currency in trade and investment, in a rapidly-evolving global financial order.
  • How businesses can harness the steady internationalization and liberalization of the RMB to gain competitive advantages in areas such as cross-border payments, liquidity management, funding and investment.
As part of efforts being made to mainstream the use of the RMB in North America, AdvantageBC and the Province of British Columbia also unveiled its new “Renminbi Toolkit” at the Summit. The Toolkit is a web-based, central source of information designed to assist companies looking to learn, prepare and communicate with relevant stakeholders and counterparties in a RMB environment. The Toolkit includes background information, key benefits, a “how to” guide on key steps, as well as relevant case studies.
Among the key findings of the Summit was a recognition that Canada’s global reputation as a leader in financial services needs to be more clearly communicated and marketed in the Americas, and that one key to the success of Canada’s RMB Hub will be to tap into our North-South connections to build a solid platform for these services to and from Asia.
Videos from the Summit will be posted on AdvantageBC’s website and plans for next year’s Pacific Finance & Trade Summit will be commencing in the next few weeks. Please check our website regularly for updates.

Did you know?

  • Vancouver ranked third most livable city in the world by the EIU.
  • Vancouver is among the top-10 wealth management centres in the world.
  • All five of Canada’s largest banks have significant operations in BC.
  • According to latest GFCI, Vancouver is the 5th most powerful financial centre in North America.