HD Bank, one of the largest independent banking organisations in Vietnam, is introducing an international money transfer service, and announced last week that it has appointed US firm MoneyGram, to handle the transactions.
The company says its new “instant” money transfer service will allow its domestic customers to transfer money to 190 countries in just 10 minutes, at a reasonable cost.
According to Vietnam.net, HD bank is “regularly rolling out new services and products in cooperation with its many major foreign partners”, to provide its customers with better experiences, and more flexible financial options.
Rajendar Dhorkay, MoneyGram’s regional director for Malaysia, Brunei, and Indochina, attended the deal signing ceremony, commenting that “MoneyGram expects to see continued growth in Vietnam and the larger Asia region due to the increased demand for money transfer services, as more people pursue work and educational opportunities outside of Vietnam.”
“We look forward to be able to service our Vietnamese receivers and Vietnamese senders living and working abroad”, he added.
According to world bank estimates, Vietnam received $13.4bn in remittances from overseas in 2016; a gain of 3% from the previous year. That puts Vietnam ninth in the list of the world’s biggest remittance receivers, behind India, China, the Philippines, Mexico, Pakistan, Nigeria, Egypt, and Bangladesh
The growth in remittances to Vietnam has been staggering; from just $140 million dollars in 1993, to $13.4bn, or 6.7 of the country’s gross domestic product, in 2016; perhaps reflecting the country’s increasing openness towards the globalised world, and a trend of migration by its citizens to other countries.
The US accounted for approximately 60% of all Vietnam’s remittance inflows in 2016, according to VN Express, which bases its calculations on several different sources. It should come as no surprise therefore, that HD bank chose a money transfer partner, MoneyGram, from the US.
Vietnam’s independent banking industry only really began in 1990, when the state elected to switch from a mono-banking system. Banking services in neighbouring countries, however, e.g. Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, and the Philippines, are amongst the most technologically advanced in the world, and are often regarded as the global leaders within the much publicised fintech industry.
Vietnam has to an extent been playing catch up, and with remittances playing such a crucial role in the nation’s economy, MoneyGram, which was almost acquired by China’s Alipay last year, until the US government rejected the move as being not in the best interests of the country, will no doubt be delighted to have signed another deal in the region.
“HDBank is a trusted and service-oriented name for Vietnamese and we are happy to be associated with one of the top banks in Viet Nam.”, said Rajendar Dhorkay.
“We actively work with our agents in other countries to develop new and tailor-fit products.”
The Vietnamese diaspora is estimated to be in the region of 3 million, with the vast majority living in the US.