JPMorgan launches Shanghai image deposit centre

The firm's latest IDC is its first in Asia and will stremline cheque clearing.
Following successful roll-outs in Europe, JPMorgan has announced the opening of its first international image deposit centre (IDC) in Asia, with the operations to be based in Shanghai. The newly-forged centre will join JPMorganÆs existing network of six other IDCs outside the US, and will allow its financial institution clients to clear their US dollar cash letters, lower cheque transportation costs and increase both operational and risk efficiency in cheques.

Its new location in ChinaÆs commercial hub will enable financial institutions in that market to streamline cheque clearing through imaging technology. The US dollar cheques are first scanned and then converted into digital imagery and then transmitted to the US for clearing.

According to JPMorgan, this revolutionary cheque clearing service will also remove delays from factors such as weather and customs inspections. It will also likely cut down on courier costs for clients mailing cheques to the US for clearing and includes the benefit of offering users the original paper cheque documents once the items clear.

This technology was first instigated after the September 11 attacks in New York and Washington due to the US governmentÆs commitment to limited transportation risk and also to create a more resilient and effective way of clearing cheques.

According to JPMorgan, Shanghai was selected for its latest centre from a number of different Asian candidates given its commercial hub status and as reflective of the firmÆs commitment to further enhancing ChinaÆs treasury space.

ôChina is a big market for US dollar cheques and as Shanghai is the countryÆs centre for financial activity, it was a natural choice for us,ö says Lisa Robins, senior vice president, head of product management, JPMorgan. ôWeÆre very focused on business development in China and as itÆs a extremely fast growing economy, weÆre excited to add our latest IDC in Shanghai.ö

When JPMorgan inaugurated its first international image deposit centre in Frankfurt last October, it become the first global treasury management services provider to establish such centres in local markets around the globe. Prior to this, similar centres were mainly found exclusively in the US.

Since October, the bank has opened five additional centres in Europe, with Madrid, Milan, Paris, Zurich and Bournemouth all selected as suitable candidates to open the new cash letter processing hubs. JPMorgan also plans to open additional hubs in Asia in the medium term.

ôWe wanted to start in Shanghai and we will expand elsewhere in the region and help our correspondent banks clear cheques in a more efficient and less risky manner,ö says Robins.
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