Italy’s UniCredit to reduce Asia Pacific presence

UniCredit, an Italian bank, announced on Tuesday that it will no longer provide basic banking services to its European clients’ Asia Pacific subsidiaries as part of a plan to consolidate its international operations and decrease costs.

According to a source close to the situation, the Milan-based bank would close its operations in Tokyo, Shanghai, and Singapore, leaving only a branch in Hong Kong.

“We will … no longer offer account banking and other banking services to the Asia Pacific region subsidiaries of clients located in our core coverage regions,” UniCredit said in reply to a Reuters request for comment.

UniCredit’s Chinese employees were informed of the decision on Monday, according to another source familiar with the situation. UniCredit said it will rely on correspondent banks to supply corporate services to European customers in the Asia Pacific, such as transaction and foreign exchange.

It will continue to assist Asian corporate and financial institution clients with their investments and business in Europe, a task that has been delegated to its Hong Kong branch.

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