The Bank for the Investment and Development of Vietnam (BIDV) has successfully invested abroad, particularly in Laos, according to a leader of the bank.

Phan Duc Tu, BIDV’s General Director, said that besides affiliation with partners from Malaysia, Russia and Cambodia, economic cooperation in the Lao market has played a significant role in the bank’s business operations over the past years.

Many Vietnamese firms in Laos agreed that BIDV, through its Lao-Viet Bank, Lao-Viet Insurance Company and BIDV Representative Office, has given them excellent guidance and advice in accessing the Lao market and expanding operations there.

Last year, BIDV’s join ventures helped the bank earn 495 billion VND (22.9 million USD), it was reported at the annual shareholders’ meeting in 2015.

According to Tran Bac Ha, Chairman of the BIDV Board of Directors, the lender was one of the first Vietnamese commercial banks to invest abroad, with the formation of the Lao-Viet Bank in 1999. After 15 years of operation, the charter capital of the bank rose from an initial 10 million USD to 80 million USD in 2014. In the first quarter of this year, the figure reached 100 million USD, he added.

Ha noted that currently, with five branches and three transaction offices across Laos, the Lao-Viet Bank is the second largest bank in the country in terms of charter capital, and the fourth in terms of outstanding loans.

Meanwhile, the Lao-Viet Insurance Company, set up in 2008 with charter capital of 3 million USD, is now ranked the second biggest in revenue, and offers the widest coverage in Laos with 16 insurance supply points and its headquarters in Vientiane, Ha said.

The BIDV Representative Office in Laos has served as the most important driving force for the development of the bank’s international economic connections, he claimed.

The office has become popular among the Vietnamese business community in Laos, contributing to fostering economic partnership between the two countries.

At the same time, the BIDV also invested in many major projects in Laos , including a 230 million USD project to build irrigation dykes in Luangnamtha province. The bank and the Lao-Viet Bank have also committed to provide credits to 23 key projects in Laos totalling 740 million USD.

The BIDV has also spent 220 billion VND (roughly 10 million USD) on social and charitable activities in the country, added Ha.-VNA