Treasury Management Internation Logo

Canadian companies remain loyal to the Canadian dollar


SWIFT’s latest RMB Tracker shows that Canadian corporations have been slow to start using RMB for cross-border payments

Toronto, 17 October 2017 – Recent data from SWIFT’s RMB Tracker shows that RMB usage in North America is low compared to the rest of the world, despite initial growth following the opening of RMB offshore clearing centres in Toronto and New York.

With the occasion of Sibos 2017 taking place in Toronto, a special edition of the RMB Tracker has been published. This report focuses on the increased presence of enablers for RMB usage in the Americas and includes statistics and analyses for the year as well as insights from financial industry experts on the recent evolution of the RMB and other currencies for cross-borders flows.

Since November 2014, when the RMB offshore clearing centre opened in Toronto, traffic between Canada and China/Hong Kong has increased despite the fact that the Canadian dollar is most preferred. Moreover, 70% of cross-border payments, by value, sent between Canada and China/Hong Kong are made using the Canadian dollar, followed by the RMB at 15% with the U.S. dollar accounting for only 1%.

Though RMB usage for payments is low, SWIFT’s data shows that RMB traffic between Canada and China/Hong Kong has grown by 67% since the opening of the RMB offshore clearing centre in November 2014.

Additional RMB highlights from the report include:

  • USD Ranked #1: as a world payments currency with 39.79% share by value; and
  • 93.7% of RMB payments by value, initiated in the U.S. and Canada and ending in China/Hong Kong are cleared in Hong Kong.

Data from the report also suggest that here is no significant correlation between the size of a country’s economy and the usage of its currency for international payments and clearing. For example, the U.S. accounts for about 25% of global GDP and the US dollar has an activity share of 39.79%. While China accounts for 15% of global GDP, the RMB is used for less than 2% of international payments.

Based on recent data, the gap between the global usage of the USD and RMB is unlikely to be sustainable, particularly as the Chinese economy continues to grow and develop broader capabilities for internationalisation of the RMB.

Michael Moon, Head of Payments Markets, APAC adds, “Although the world remains highly dollarised, the growing prominence of the Chinese economy supports a case for greater RMB usage internationally. Liberalisation of capital markets in China, and initiatives such as the Belt and Road – over time, will contribute to further RMB globalisation.”

Please click here to download a copy of SWIFT’s special edition RMB Tracker report. 


Most recent episodes

HSBC’s Sibos Spotlight: Investing in the Future – from Diversity to Green Deposits

In the final instalment of HSBC’s Sibos Spotlight, Eleanor Hill (TMI) invites Nadine Lagarmitte and Suraj Kalati (HSBC) to consider how corporates’ attitudes to...


HSBC’s Sibos Spotlight: The ESG Landscape – what every treasurer needs to know

In the third edition of HSBC’s Sibos Spotlight Podcast series, TMI’s Eleanor Hill invites Farnam Bidgoli (HSBC) to provide an in-depth overview of the current ESG...


The Path to Transformational Global Cash Visibility

Davina Bradley (CEVA Logistics) and Conor Deegan (CashAnalytics) join TMI’s Eleanor Hill to explore how treasurers can transform their cash visibility and forecasting within their business in a matter of weeks using a...


HSBC’s Sibos Spotlight: Embedding ESG in Trade and Supply Chains

In the second podcast from HSBC’s Sibos Spotlight series, TMI’s Eleanor Hill speaks to Surath Sengupta (HSBC) about embedding ESG into trade and supply chains....


Lost in Transaction: Overcoming Payments Pitfalls

From simple errors to duplicates, fraud and sanctions violations, there are a number of areas where payments can go wrong – especially in the real-time environment. In this podcast, TMI speaks to Andrew Ferrao...


HSBC's Sibos Spotlight: Central Bank Digital Currencies

The first edition of HSBC’s Sibos Spotlight series sees TMI’s Eleanor Hill joined by Mark Williamson and James Pomeroy (HSBC) to discuss the hot topic of Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs). Our guests discuss...


Payments Vision 2025: The Inside Track

Wim Grosemans, Steven Lenaerts (BNP Paribas) and Wim Raymaekers (SWIFT) join TMI’s Eleanor Hill to outline their vision for the payments landscape in 2025. Our guests consider how recent developments such as instant...


Stepping Out from the Shadows

“Treasurers needs to step out of the shadows and into the sunshine in terms of their strategic contribution.” claims Zitah McMillan, Co-Founder and CEO, Predictive Black. In this podcast, hosted by TMI’s Eleanor Hill, our guest declares that the...


Why the ‘One Size Fits All’ Approach is Outdated - A Cash Segmentation Treasury Masterclass

With the ongoing low interest-rate environment and increasing regulatory change, it’s more important than ever for treasurers...


Instant Payments: Instant Rewards

TMI’s Eleanor Hill sits down in the virtual TreasuryCast studio with J.P. Morgan’s Global Head of Real-Time Payments, Cyrus Bhathawalla, to discuss how treasurers can capitalise on the evolving nature of real-time payments. Our guest contemplates the elements...