March 13, 2017

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Ground-breaking banking services for Myanmar-American Financial Sector

Dignitaries from the KBZ Bank and SMBC pose for photo at the ceremony to announce KBZ Bank’s USD Settlement Account. Photo: Thura Lwin

In the past, Myanmar had to make contact with a mediator country for help in conducting banking services with the United States. As of 16 February, that is no longer necessary.
Through efforts by Kanbawza (KBZ) Bank, the largest privately owned bank in the country, remittances between Myanmar and the U.S. have finally reached international banking standards, a positive step toward the nascent development of Myanmar’s economy.
In 2011, the U.S. reduced its economic sanctions over Myanmar in hopes of bettering  Myanmar-American relations. Now trade financing and transfer of financing services between Myanmar and the U.S. can be done without delay at any time. Banking-related economic enterprises as well will be able to conducts their business more actively and effectively. Trade and financing are inter-related with each other, so banks and financial institutions will be able to offer smoother trading, better services and more convenience between sellers and buyers.
KBZ Bank can now operate banking services of remittance of financing with their partnership with Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation of New York (SMBC NY), opening a USD Settlement Account. This allows for more immediate and active transfer of financing, and should be considered a ground-breaking landmark for the Myanmar financial sector.
It is necessary to co-operate services in harmony with international banks for the development of Myanmar’s financing world. In doing so, banks and financing institutions in our country are playing an important role like a bridge spanning between individuals.
In business, it is a necessity to save time in transferring financing. Availability of a 24-hour-clearance service is needed as well. Operating Services of Settlement Accounts makes banking processes less complicated. It is learnt that payment processes can now be accomplished without delay.
After having signed a Memorandum of Understanding in 2012, KBZ Bank has accomplished this co-operation with SMBC NY Bank, instantly improving the development of Myanmar’s economy and financing market.
The Co-partner Committee was formed in November, 2016, with discussions and knowledge-sharing for trade finance, corporate banking and other services completed. In early February, a USD Settlement Account Service was launched with SMBC NY.
KBZ Bank, which was formed in 1994, is currently opening international branches and has been the company that pay the largest amount of taxes to the Union for the past five consecutive years. KBZ Bank achieves awards annually for its state-of-the-art banking services. It is operating services in over 450 branch banks across the nation. It lends the biggest amounts of loans and is simultaneously investing for internationally-standardized services and technical inventions.
A co-partnership with VISA, which has the biggest payment website in the world, has transformed its conventional banking system into a digital financing system that does not require the system of paying in cash. Settlement can be done promptly with the use of the Pay Wave Technique. Travelers and students who go abroad can pay online. The KBZ Explore Prepaid Card can be used in two forms—VISA & Master Card — that can be used for shopping, settling payment and withdrawing, it is learnt.
Union Pay Credit Cards are the most reliable credit cards in Asia, linking with KBZ UPI Classic Card and KBZ UPI Platinum Card.
In February 2016, KBZ Bank inked a Settlement Bank Service Deal with the Yangon Stock Exchange (YSX).
It was found that it has been co-operating with the American company Microsoft to secure financing service in accord with international standards. This will help the development of information technology on banking services and progress in corporate social responsibility. It is hoped that banking services will be promoted by using information technology.
As a campaign for civil society rehabilitation, KBZ established a foundation for the future in 2007, taking part in philanthropic works enthusiastically and donating huge amounts of money amounting to Ks114 billion so far.
Presently, IT began to take place in banking service. It is now bringing about a new electronic banking system in co-operation with Oracle Financial Services Software.
To upgrade online banking, iBanking and mBanking are said to be able to be used in bank branches in which Oracle Flexcube Universal Banking Software after registration.
It is of great importance to apply technology for the development of banking service.
It was also found that KBZ Gateway Company and Hughes Network System US are giving quick and better banking and financial services through Satellite Communication’s new technological system.
So as to develop financial sector, which is important for the development of the State, all the staff from KBZ Bank are striving towards world-class baking. I assume that all privately-owned banks in Myanmar need to co-operate with international banks and technological companies. It is necessary for all our local banks and financial institutions to work hand in hand to be able to lift the economic development of the State.
We can also see that all the banks, regardless of its financial volume, are taking part in effectively implementing economic and financial policies.
The heart of a financial system can be likened to soul of all banks. Therefore, I want to assert that banks are greatly important for all the developments of the nation’s economy and industries, for the survival of SMEs and prosperity of trade and commerce.
Only if savings and investments are encouraged and there is not a scarcity of capital for investment, will the economy of the State sustainably develop. In laying down economic development plans, investment plays an important role strategically, so the role of banks is vital. I hope that we will see all public-orientated banks develop proportionally, by providing timely banking services for the people.
It will definitely stand tall as an important sector for Myanmar’s economic development, provided that sustainably developed banking system strengthens, according to Myanmar’s unswerving spirit to keep abreast with the world.

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