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Fintech hold massive potential for Asian businesses

Not only does fintech hold massive potential for Asian businesses – those who do not get on board soon will be left behind, warns Lawrence Yeo.

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Fintech is a new financial industry that applies technology to improve financial activities, with key areas being the automation of insurance, trading and risk management.

Between 2005 and 2015, global investment in fintech increased by more than 2200%, from $930m to some $22bn.

Fintech’s potential remains big. From the demand side across much of south-east Asia, the unmet need for basic banking services is significant. KPMG reports that only 27% of the region’s 600 million inhabitants had a bank account in 2016.

From the supply side, a new wave of start-ups is increasingly ‘disaggregating’ global banks. Milken Institute’s Centre for Financial Markets reports that much of the venture capital in Asia has flowed into China, particularly among a handful of large tech companies. Yet other countries also are seeking to position themselves as fintech hubs.

The Straits Times reported that multimillion-dollar investments were reported in 2017 in Hong Kong (in digital wallet operator TNG FinTech Group), in India (in online lending platform Capital Float) and in South Korea’s second largest cryptocurrency exchange, Korbit.

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Thailand’s Banking Outlook changed to negative (Moody’s)

Moody’s has changed the outlook for Thailand’s banking system to negative from positive as coronavirus outbreak hurts asset quality and profitability

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Moody’s has changed the outlook for Thailand’s banking system to negative from positive. The operating environment for the country’s banks will deteriorate in the next 12-18 months due to disruptions from the coronavirus outbreak, and this will lead to a weakening of banks’ asset quality and profitability.

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Thai Banks launch packages for clients affected by COVID-19

Commercial banks in Thailand have offered refinancing services to some 30,000 clients, worth 234 billion baht in total.

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All commercial banks in Thailand have pledged to offer special financial aid to customers and businesses affected directly or indirectly by the economic implications of COVID-19, ensuring sufficient cash for customers to make withdrawals at any time.

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Banking

Thailand raises threshold to 1 million US dollars for repatriation

In a bid to lessen pressure on the Thai baht, the Bank of Thailand has increased to $1M the limit for foreign funds that do not need to be repatriated

Boris Sullivan

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The Bank of Thailand has relaxed foreign exchange regulations by increasing the threshold for proceeds that do not need to be repatriated from current $200,000 to USD 1,000,000 .

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