Ant Financial Services Group, a subsidiary of the Chinese Alibaba Group, has confirmed Luxembourg as the location of its European hub.
The confirmation was made during Luxembourg Minister of Finance Pierre Gramegna’s mission in China this week (9-13 September 2018) which focused on sustainable finance and the strengthening of ties between Luxembourg and China.
After having attended a series of meetings in Beijing, first with his Chinese counterpart, Liu Kun, on the macroeconomic situation and risks of protectionism, and then with the leaders of several Chinese banks, Pierre Gramegna met with the President of Ant Financial, Eric Jing, in Hangzhou to discuss the company’s international development strategy and the role that Luxembourg could play in this context. At this meeting, Eric Jing confirmed that Ant Financial, the parent company of Alipay, China’s largest mobile payment platform, has chosen Luxembourg as a European hub to help connect their Chinese customers with merchants established in the European Union.
Furthermore, Minister Gramegna had a working luncheon with the leaders of the Asian Investment Bank for Infrastructure (AIIB), whose general meeting will be held in 2019 for the first time in Europe, in Luxembourg. This event, which dates back to an initiative of Minister Gramegna, will be a unique opportunity to promote Luxembourg as a leading financial centre and key player in the economic rapprochement between Asia and Europe.
As part of his mission, the Minister of Finance also participated in two seminars organised by Luxembourg for Finance for Chinese financial professionals in Beijing and Shanghai. A delegation of more than a hundred representatives of the Luxembourg financial centre went to China for the occasion.
Finally, the Minister’s visit to China involved the signing of agreements between Bank of China and Cargolux, the Luxembourg Stock Exchange and China Central Depository & Clearing Co. (CCDC), the Luxembourg Stock Exchange, the Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE) and Bank of China, as well as between LHoFT and Shanghai-based DeepBlue Technology respectively.
Pierre Gramegna commented: “This mission has made a tangible contribution to further strengthening the ties between Luxembourg and China. Thanks to our efforts in recent years, the number of Chinese banks established in Luxembourg has increased from 3 in 2013 to 7 in 2018, today employing more than 440 people. There are two banks taken over by a Chinese shareholder, as well as three Fintech companies of Chinese origin, which continue to develop favorably. Others, including Alipay, announced their arrival. […] These results illustrate the success of the strategy to promote and develop the financial centre, implemented during the current parliamentary term, particularly with respect to China”.