RMB usage in ASEAN countries continues to grow
The cross-border use of the Chinese currency renminbi in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations has maintained growth momentum, with increasing recognition in ASEAN countries, a recent report showed.
China-ASEAN cross-border RMB settlement volume has surged nearly 20-fold in a decade, Financial News said quoting a report on the use of RMB in ASEAN countries.
In 2021, the figure reached 4.8 trillion yuan ($684.96 billion), up 16 percent year-on-year, said the report, which was released by the Financial Society of Guangxi during the 14th China-ASEAN Summit Forum on Financial Cooperation & Development.
By the end of 2021, China had signed bilateral currency settlement agreements with Vietnam, Indonesia and Cambodia separately, as well as currency swap agreements with Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand, worth about 800 billion yuan.
The RMB payment and clearing network continues to improve between China-ASEAN.
A total of 16 ASEAN financial institutions became new indirect participants of the Cross-border Interbank Payment System, or CIPS for short, in 2021. The CIPS handled 3.3 trillion yuan of China-ASEAN cross-border RMB business last year, jumping more than 50 percent on a yearly basis.
With the signing of the RCEP agreement and further enhancement of regional economic integration, the RMB is expected to usher in broader use in ASEAN countries, the report said.
China has been ASEAN's largest trading partner for 13 consecutive years, and ASEAN became China's top trading partner in 2020, surpassing the European Union, according to the Ministry of Commerce.
From January to August, the trade volume between China and ASEAN reached $627.6 billion, up 13.3 percent year-on-year, while trade between China and other RCEP members grew 7.5 percent on a yearly basis, according to the General Administration of Customs.