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New Silk Road Finance Awards

Southeast Asia: Best Local Bank in the Region for BRI 2017

Siam Commercial Bank

Thailand is still considered one of southeast Asia’s longer-term success stories, despite a slowdown in economic growth and concerns over political stability in recent years.

In the space of four decades, Thailand has evolved from a low-income to an upper-middle-income country, attracting strong foreign direct investment from China while solid local banks support local projects. Domestic lenders will continue to support Thailand’s growth as China’s Belt and Road Initiative takes shape in Asean.

Siam Commercial Bank (SCB) in Thailand stands out as the local bank best placed to support Thai and Chinese corporates that want to set up in the southeast Asian country and wins Asiamoney’s award for best local bank in southeast Asia for BRI.

Thailand’s third-largest bank in terms of assets launched a one-year bridge loan programme in August 2016 specifically for Chinese companies to help support foreign investment in Thailand.

The programme offers up to Bt200 million ($6 million) in the form of a credit line to allow Chinese companies buying land in industrial parks to set up factories in Thailand. If successful and if demand were to arise, the programme could be extended to investment from other countries.

To deepen the connection with China, SCB hopes to open its first bank branch in Shanghai next year. It already has representative offices in Beijing and Hong Kong, and plans to open branches in Indonesia, Vietnam and Myanmar as it aims to benefit from Belt and Road projects in the region more broadly. 

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