简体中文 | ENGLISH


Online Banking

 
 

History

 
 


Effort on Overseas Remittance to Support the Fight Against Japan (1939 - 1945)


 

After the outbreak of the Anti-Japanese War, the government was in urgent need of foreign exchange to import military supplies. Meanwhile, it was very difficult to increase foreign exchange revenue from export, as the export was blocked by war. The gap between foreign exchange supply and demand was broadened. Therefore, it made sense to strive for more overseas remittance business. As a government authorized international exchange bank, Bank of China, with its multiple overseas branches, was instructed by the Ministry of Finance to collect overseas remittance. Bank of China tried its best to overcome the difficulties brought by war to ensure the overseas remittance business.

I. Overcoming difficulties of war and organizing payment of overseas remittance. In May 1938, Xiamen was occupied by the invader and most of the overseas remittance business of civil postal offices and banks were stagnated. Bank of China took advantage of Gulangyu Concession to pay overseas remittance directly in nearby areas. Meanwhile, it dispatched staff to deliver overseas mails to Quanzhou so that the overseas remittance could be paid via Quanzhou Sub-Branch. Afterwards, it added branches in Yongchun and Hanjiang. Thanks to its safe and quick payment of overseas remittance, Bank of China was entrusted by Southeast Asian civil postal offices for payment. During that period of time, almost all overseas remittance was handled by Bank of China.

Giant of overseas Chinese - Tan Kah kee made comments in his Memoirs of Southeast Asia," Chinese people in Southeast Asia remitted at least 10 million yuan to their hometown per month, which indirectly enhanced the country's economic power. Several months ago when the invader controlled Xiamen as well as coastal frontiers of Chaoshan and Minyue, banks either reduced size or closed, and some civil postal offices took the advantage of the situation by increasing the handling fee. We overseas Chinese found it difficult to deliver remittance. Luckily, Bank of China undertook the responsibility to set up offices in urban and rural areas across inland in Fujian and Guangdong provinces to assist. Regardless of the amount, the distance or traffic, Bank of China carried out the business with low handling fee".

II. Setting up more overseas offices and establishing a financial network for overseas remittance. In early days of the war, Bank of China added 18 overseas branches successively to collect more overseas remittance to meet the demands in the wartime. Bank of China also worked out Cooperation Rules on Absorbing Overseas Remittance with the post office, regulating that Bank of China would undertake all overseas remittance business in regions where it had set up branches or agency banks. Domestically, no matter whether there was a branch in the payment area, Bank of China would entrust the post office to pay overseas remittance, with the advantage of pervasiveness and swift delivery of post office.

III. Mobilizing overseas Chinese to transfer money to homeland. When the European War broke out, Bank of China realized that Southeast Asia had become the target of Japanese army, so it mobilized overseas Chinese to transfer their money to homeland by means of investment or deposit so as to support the fight against Japan or support construction and production. Though it was difficult for Chinese people living in Thailand, Burma, Vietnam and etc. to handle the remittance transfer due to local regulation, with the help of Bank of China, certain effect was achieved. In 1940, Chinese living in Thailand alone remitted more than 200 million yuan to China.

Thanks to its achievements in overseas remittance, Bank of China made certain contribution to the fight against Japan and the financial stability during the wartime.

I. Bank of China was the main force in absorbing remittance from overseas Chinese. Overseas remittance amounted to 4.05 billion yuan of legal tender during the initial four years of Anti-Japanese War (from 1937 to 1940), which was 126.8% of fiscal revenue during the same period. Average annual overseas remittance reached around one billion yuan of legal tender, which was enough to compensate adverse balance of trade. The percentage of overseas remittance collected by Bank of China in the total amount of China increased from 14% in 1939 to 46% in 1941. When the Pacific War broke out, although the entire overseas remittance income fluctuated, the percentage taken by Bank of China was always around 50%. Bank of China became the main force in collecting overseas remittance.

II. Bank of China's overseas branches played an important role in collecting overseas remittance. During the seven years from 1939 to 1945, Bank of China collected overseas remittance amounting to 3.57 billion yuan of legal tender. The payment of overseas remittance would exceed 16 billion yuan of legal tender if the subsidies were included. Overseas remittance collected by Bank of China Singapore Branch accounted for 97% of the total in 1939; overseas remittance collected by its New York Branch accounted for 25% of the total in 1940, and was gradually increased to 75%; overseas remittance collected by its London Branch reached 20% of the total in 1944.

  [ Close Window ]
Personal Banking Login
Personal Banking(VIP) Login
Corporate Banking Login



   Overview
   Anti-Money Laundering
   Corporate Social Responsibilities
   Organization
   History
   Awards
   Bank Card Gallery
   Commemorative Bank Notes



 
  Site Map | Contact Us | Term & Conditions | Copyright | 京ICP证 060399
 
Copyright © BANK OF CHINA(BOC) All Rights Reserved.