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Standard Chartered sees good business in Africa, China trade

Standard Chartered sees good business in Africa, China trade

(11 August 2006 – China) Standard Chartered will expand its business in Africa to take advantage of increasing trade flows between that continent and China. According to the bank, trade flows between China and Africa have grown almost tenfold over the past six years. In 2005 trade flows hit US$40 billion, up from US$4.5 billion in 1999.

Given this scenario, Standard Chartered has said it will raise it stake in niche investment bank First Africa Group to around 25 percent, giving it a majority holding, within 18 months to two years.

Standard Chartered chief executive for Africa, Sherazum Mazari, said the fact that the bank was strongly positioned in both regions would see it benefit from increasing trade flows.

Standard Chartered bought its stake in First Africa, which operates as a boutique corporate advisory business across Africa last month.

The bank’s Africa business increased more than 200 percent to US$91 million in the six months to June. Last week, Standard Chartered announced its total half year profit grew 15 percent to US$1.53 billion.

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