France holds the leading position of Euro countries exchanging RMB payments, following a 249% growth in payments value since March 2012.
According to the SWIFT RMB Tracker, France is now ranked No. 4 in the world for RMB payments value (excluding Hong Kong and China), trailing behind the United Kingdom, Singapore and Taiwan.
21.4% of the payments made between France and China/Hong Kong were denominated in CNY in March 2013 versus only 6.5% one year ago.
SWIFT notes that the majority of RMB payments made were institutional transfers (95%), whilst only 5% were customer payments.
“This is an interesting development as it signifies France’s drive to become a leading RMB trading centre for Europe," says Lisa O’Connor, RMB Director at SWIFT. "French acceleration in RMB payments reflects increased competition with the UK since the Bank of England announced that it had signed a three-year currency swap agreement with China in March.
"It will be interesting to see how France’s work towards setting up a currency swap agreement with China progresses, and the impact that this activity within Europe
may have on the RMB.”
The RMB continues to ascend the ranks as a major international payments currency regaining its position as No. 13, with an all-time high market share of 0.74%.
Overall, RMB payments grew in value by 32.7%, in comparison to the average increase of just 5.1% across all currencies.