Westpac has received approval from India’s central bank for a branch licence in the fast-growing economic powerhouse.
The Australia banking giant plans to open its first branch in India’s financial and business centre, Mumbai, to provide commercial and wholesale banking operations, after operating a representative office there for the past five years, according to The Australian.
Westpac Institutional Bank group executive Rob Whitfield said the licence would help Westpac capitalise on growing trade and investment between India and Australia.
“India is Australia’s fifth-largest trading partner and fourth-largest export market, so it is a very important market for our customers,” Whitfield said, according to The Australian.
Westpac has the smallest international exposure among the top four Australian banks, with branches in Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong in China as well as the city state of Singapore.