Australia’s Westpac Banking Corporation has opened a new sub-branch in Shanghai’s free trade zone to support clients through easier investment controls and financial liberating policies.

The move will enable customers in China and Australia to embrace the benefits of dealing directly in RMB in both markets, thereby increasing liquidity to encourage more finance and hedging activity.

Under the free-trade agreement, China will deliver new and improved commercial access to Australian financial service providers in banking, insurance, funds management and securities.

Rob Whitfield, CEO of Westpac Institutional Bank, said: "The closer economic relations built between the Chinese and Australian governments last month reinforce the strategic value of the Shanghai FTZ.

"Westpac is well positioned to help customers capitalize on the increasing trade, investment and capital flows as we are one of the first banks in Australasia to connect with the yuan hub in Sydney."

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