Bank of China celebrated four years on Wednesday since opening its doors in New Zealand and is promising to “continue to leverage our cross-border advantages to promote bilateral economic and trade cooperation”.

The bank says its total NZ assets stand at NZ$2.23 billion (at 30 September 2018). Loans and advances have increased to $1.87 billion, representing 84% of total assets, with among these, personal loans comprising $850 million.

It’s not the only Chinese banking giant taking big strides in New Zealand. ICBC NZ as of June had NZ$2.51 billion in assets and NZ$1.56 billion in loans and advances, while China Construction Bank (also at June) had NZ$1.65 billion in assets and NZ$1.27 billion of loans and advances.

Bank of China says its NZ staff numbers have more than quadrupled, from 14 to 69 people – and “the bank continues to seek additional talent”. It says 85% of the team are local employees and to accommodate a growing headcount, and to offer additional services to corporate customers, Bank of China has refurbished and expanded into two additional floors at their headquarters at 205 Queen Street, Auckland, including a new customer floor.

Customers attended a special event marking the four year anniversary and the opening of the new customer floor on Wednesday night.

Bank of China (New Zealand) CEO David Wang said: “I am delighted by the progress Bank of China (New Zealand) has made in the last four years, and I am confident that there is an exciting future ahead. We will continue to leverage our cross-border advantages to promote bilateral economic and trade cooperation.”

The bank’s core businesses services include commercial banking, a global trade service, corporate banking and financial markets services.

It lays claim to being “China’s most diversified and international bank”, with a presence in 56 countries and regions and says its NZ team has been able to play a significant role in growing New Zealand’s trade interests with China.

“In the last four years more than 300 New Zealand companies have attended match-making events with their Chinese counterparts, both in China and New Zealand.

“The bank has also facilitated the attendance of 20 New Zealand companies at the SME Cross-border Investment and Trade Cooperation Conferences in Guizhou and Shaanxi in 2016 and the Industrial and Commercial Enterprises Cross-border Investment and Trade Events in Shenyang and Zhengzhou in 2018.”

In the next 15 years, China is expected to import US$30 trillion worth of commodities, US$10 trillion worth of services and attract US$2 trillion of foreign direct investment.

Wang said: “The Bank of China (New Zealand) team will continue to work hard to ensure New Zealand leverages as much of the huge export potential to China as possible.”