The Standard Chartered Bank on Friday officially launched the International Trust Account (ITA) product for SMEs which is going to enable the SMEs in Botswana to save significant amounts of money when telegraphically transferring money overseas.
The ITA, according to a press release, is a current account for SMEs in the Imports-Export Industry. This, it said, is a logical extension of Standard Chartered Bank’s Global reach with a presence in more than 50 countries across the globe.
This account is a deposit based product and its main features include free Bank branches across 50 countries where the bank operates flat commission charges on all international telegraphic transfer payments to any other bank, the release stated. There are also flat fees on most trade products and access to the bank’s Straight2Bank internet-based facility. This fully integrated end-to-end platform provides cash, trade, Foreign Exchange (FX) and Security Services via a single sign-on access. It is stated in the press statement that the enhancements provide clients with streamlined and straight through processing of transactions, resulting in significant operating efficiently and cost saving.
“The ITA is a unique product, another in the suite of offerings that Standard Chartered Bank has designed specially for the SMEs sector,” said Pierre Mourier who is the Head of Consumer Banking. According to Mourier, this new ITA has a range of features that will benefit the Import-Export SMEs, and will quite importantly see substantial cost savings by using Standard Chartered Bank’s network.
Additionally, he said, this is the second product they have launched in as many months, to eradicate the importance of place on the SMEs owners in Botswana. He said last month the rule-breaking Express Credit Loan, that provides both secured and unsecured loans to SMEs with little or no hassle, was launched in Gaborone with significant success.
The SME Value Center in Standard Chartered Bank was the first of its kind to develop products aimed at assisting the SMEs in Botswana to reach their full potential, said Mourier.
He further revealed that Standard Chartered Bank is facilitating a trip to Hong Kong for 25 Botswana SMEs to attend the SME World Expo from December 9t to 14, 2007. During this trip, Mourier highlighted that the SMEs will be afforded the opportunity to meet with counterparts and trading partners in meetings that have been arranged through Standard Chartered Bank Hong Kong Affiliated SME network. “Standard Chartered Bank is one of the largest banks in Hong Kong, and is the only bank in Botswana with significant businesses in China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Korea, South India and the Middle East,” he said.
The Standard Chartered Bank’s SME customers can look forward to similar travel opportunities across the SCB network in the future. Standard Chartered Bank is committed to continue assisting with the development of SMEs in this country, concluded Mourier.