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Sept 17, 2008 (LBO) – Sri Lankan investors in Vietnam could bank at a new fully owned branch in the country after authorities gave the go ahead to incorporate a local unit in the country, the banking group’s Colombo office said. “We feel that this is strategically important for the local investors and corporates who bank with HSBC, as we could provide a gamut of services to help Sri Lankans operating in Vietnam or hoping to start operations in Vietnam,” a bank spokesman said.

HSBC has received approval from authorities to set up a wholly owned bank in Vietnam, which the bank says will allow it to set up a locally incorporated unit and become a leading foreign bank in the country.

“We continue to increase our participation in Vietnam’s economy and financial markets, and I am very glad to see that our commitment to the development of the financial sector has been recognised and supported by the authorities,”

“We aim to start operating through our new local entity as early as possible and will actively work with authorities to complete the necessary business registration activities in the coming months,” Thomas Tobin, HSBC chief in Vietnam said in a statement.

“We hope to become the first foreign bank to opera