National Australia Bank To Shutter Hong Kong Office
HONG KONG – The National Australia Bank (NAB) just announced that it plans to close down its outlet in the Chinese territory after revealing that its offices in Singapore, Shanghai, and Tokyo are the most preferred outreach hubs by its client in Asia, reported Reuters on Thursday morning (14 September, SGT).
While the looming closure of NAB’s Hong Kong office will likely affect around 50 jobs in the city, the bank stated that it’s “too early” to say what the impact of the closure would be.
“The decision probably reflects that foreign businesses are not finding operating conditions in Hong Kong as conducive as they once were,” commented KCM Trade’s Chief Market Analyst Tim Waterer.
The National Australia Bank estimates that the closing of its office in Hong Kong could take approximately 1 year and 6 months to complete.
Interestingly, fellow Australian financial institution Westpac had also stopped operating in Hong Kong in June 2023 after closing its offices in the Chinese territory.
“Companies will often follow the path of least resistance when it comes to operating conditions ‘on the ground’ in overseas jurisdictions,” explained Waterer.
He pointed out that this trend of multinational banks closing their offices in Hong Kong shows that global companies are now favouring the Asian commercial hub’s rivals, such as Singapore.