The Royal Bank of Scotland is looking at the potential of an onshore Korean derivatives operation and recently shunted B.C. Kang, head of the Korean coverage desk in Hong Kong, to Seoul to establish a representative office. "We will shortly begin a feasibility study," said Kang, noting the firm could open an onshore banking branch which could allow it access to the growing local derivatives market.
If the study shows demand for the operation, it would then seek managerial and regulatory approval. The bank could kick-start a trading operation by early next year if there was demand.
The move fits with RBS aggressive expansion into the Asian markets in the last few years. Last year it established a regional credit structuring desk (DW, 7/28/03) and earlier this year announced plans to bulk up its equity derivatives presence (DW, 1/28).