Surge in Foreign Loans to Australian Companies

Bank of China Ltd. and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp. are leading a surge in loans to Australian companies by lenders from Asia’s two biggest economies.

The amount owed to the four biggest Chinese banks in Australia by non-financial corporations jumped 50 percent in the year through April to A$11.9 billion ($11.2 billion), while the equivalent for the three largest Japanese creditors rose 18 percent to A$28.1 billion, data from the prudential regulator compiled by Bloomberg show. The Asian lenders are filling some of the void left by European peers, whose volumes in Australia have not regained levels seen since before the 2008 crisis.

China’s banks, expanding overseas to gain the experience they need to compete with global lenders in their domestic market, have boosted loans in Australia by more than 20-fold over six years. Japanese finance providers, flush with low-cost money from the Bank of Japan’s stimulus program, have helped fund companies including Sydney Airport and Newcastle Coal Infrastructure Group Pty.


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