Citigroup Launches Securities Exchange Clearing Services in Hong Kong

Hong Kong — February 22, 2006 — Citigroup has launched a securities exchange clearing service in Hong Kong. Citigroup will provide back office securities clearing services and will act as ‘account operator’ for exchange members. This includes handling certain operational activities relating to trades executed on the Hong Kong stock exchange and securities clearing and settlement. Citigroup has already signed up one client and further clients are expected to be added in the coming year.

Citigroup is the first custodian bank to act as a settlement agent in Hong Kong for an external party after changes in legislation in November 2004 that allowed exchange members to outsource clearing and settlement activities.

Citigroup’s settlement agent services offers broker dealers the convenience of an end-to-end outsourcing service for clearing, settlement and asset servicing of Hong Kong equities. Citigroup provides processing of all securities transactions and supporting functions such as cash projections, stamp duty payment and reporting, corporate actions and income collection.

Globally, Citigroup has been providing securities exchange clearing services since 1997 and has successfully leveraged its regional and global expertise for other local markets in Asia Pacific, launching securities exchange clearing services in Australia, Malaysia and Singapore during 2005.

“Citigroup’s securities exchange clearing services will further improve the accessibility of the Hong Kong market to firms by reducing their infrastructure requirements and maximizing the efficiency of their resources – in terms of both technology and people,” said Michael Drumgoole, Regional Product Manager for Custody and Clearing at Citigroup’s Global Transaction Services.

Fanny Wong, Director and Securities Country Manager, Hong Kong added, “This is the latest in a series of enhancements Citigroup in Hong Kong has made and is a great example of our unique advantage: leveraging the expertise and know how of Citigroup in the region and globally, combined with our leadership position in market advocacy and product innovation in Hong Kong. This has enabled us to bring another new product to market that delivers real benefits to our clients."

In 2005, Citigroup Hong Kong was named “Top Rated” custodian by institutional investors in Global Custodian’s magazine Agent Bank Survey, the sixth time in the row that Citigroup has been awarded this title.

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