LONDON (Reuters) - Chinese renminbi trade volumes in London more than doubled last year, according to figures from the City of London Corporation on Friday, in a further sign of deepening financial links between Britain and China.
Overall renminbi trading volumes rose 143 percent compared with 2013 as average daily volumes reached $61.5 billion (£39.17 billion), said the City of London, the municipal government of London’s Square Mile financial district.
Spot trading volumes stood at $18.4 billion dollars per day in 2014, up more than three times compared with the previous year.
London has been keen to attract Chinese banks and encourage offshore trade in the yuan to bolster its position as the world’s main centre for foreign exchange trading.
“Our latest research strongly indicates the substantial growth of London’s RMB market in both depth and sophistication, with more active market participants,” said Mark Boleat, policy chairman at the City of London.
“The next few months promise to be incredibly important with the launch of China’s new international payments system and ongoing discussions over the renminbi’s potential inclusion in the IMF’s basket of reserve currencies.”
The International Monetary Fund is currently reviewing whether the yuan is both widely used internationally and freely usable, criteria for its inclusion in the Special Drawing Rights basket of currencies.
While London is dominant in global foreign exchange trading, Hong Kong is currently the biggest offshore renminbi centre. Daily turnover through its clearing and settlement platform exceeded 880 billion yuan (£90.44 billion) in December 2014, according to the Hong Kong Monetary Authority.
Reporting by Andy Bruce; Editing by Hugh Lawson