SBI becomes first domestic bank to open branch in Yangon, Myanmar
India’s largest lender State Bank of India (SBI) has announced the opening up its foreign branch in Yangon, the capital city of Myanmar. With this, SBI became the first domestic bank of India to open a branch in Myanmar.
The Yangon branch is the 54th foreign branch of the SBI. This branch further extends the global presence of India’s largest lender in 37 countries through 198 offices.
The Yangon branch was started after the Myanmarese central bank allowed SBI to open a branch with the primary objective of extending wholesale banking services to foreign corporates.
India has been a major trading partner of Myanmar for centuries. Since the signing of India and Myanmar trade agreement in 1970, bilateral trade between two neighbours has been growing steadily and rose from US 328 million dollars in 1997-98 to US 2.052 billion dollars in 2015-16. Earlier SBI was also associated with Myanmar since 1861, when the erstwhile Bank of Bengal (BoB) operated its branch in the then Rangoon. Later the operations of the Rangoon branch of SBI were taken over by the Peoples’ Bank of Burma in February 1963 as part of bank nationalisation.