World Gold Council and ICBC launch first gold accumulation plan in China

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One million accounts already opened

The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), the world’s largest commercial bank, together with the World Gold Council (WGC), the market development organisation for the gold industry, today jointly launched a new gold investment product for Chinese investors – the ICBC Gold Accumulation Plan (ICBC GAP). Through this product, ICBC is the first commercial bank to provide investors in mainland China with a way to accumulate gold through a daily dollar averaging scheme with payments as little as RMB 10 per day. The product will enhance the current gold investment market in China and marks a milestone for the strategic partnership between ICBC and the WGC.

A totally new gold investment product

In China, there are currently various ways to invest in gold, including physical gold bars, gold saving accounts, leveraged gold trading accounts, structured gold products and gold futures. ICBC GAP is the latest addition to the product range, and caters for the retail investor who wants to accumulate gold on a daily basis over a long period of time. This scheme also reduces concerns regarding volatility in the gold price. 

“The new ICBC GAP was developed in association with the WGC. After opening an account, investors can start to accumulate gold on a daily basis according to the pre-set monthly amount. They are also able to top up their GAP on an ad hoc basis at any time. At maturity, they can renew the contract, convert it into cash or exchange it for physical gold at designated branches of the ICBC network. ICBC GAP has already been pilot tested in key cities over the past few months, resulting in one million accounts having already been opened and over ten tonnes of gold accumulated” said Zheng Zhiguang, General Manager of the Precious Metals Business Department, ICBC.

A further feature of the product is the low minimum entry level, as ICBC GAP has been designed with a minimum required investment of either RMB 200 per month or 1 gram per day, compared to a gold savings account, which is based on a minimum investment of 10 grams.

“Gold investment has been booming in recent years but individual investors had been hesitant in entering the market. ICBC GAP is a very practical way for individual investors across China to start buying gold as a means of protecting their wealth as well as diversifying their portfolio.  With its unmatched benefits coupled with ICBC’s nationwide branch network, this GAP product is an ideal solution for individuals who have a long term strategy to accumulate gold and are looking to preserve wealth.” said Albert Cheng, Managing Director for the Far East at the World Gold Council.

A win-win partnership

ICBC is a pioneer and an undisputed leader in precious metals in China following the launch of its Precious Metals Department back in September 2009. On April 1, 2010, ICBC and the World Gold Council signed a strategic partnership agreement to jointly develop gold investment opportunities in China. The scope of the co-operation ranges from training and market research to product development.

Mr Cheng continued: “China is one of the biggest gold producers and consumers in the world. Together with ICBC, we are committed to developing further gold solutions for investors, as well as helping ICBC expand their offering in the domestic and international precious metals markets.”

View the video of the launch event

For further information please contact:

David Zhang
AcrossChina Communications
T: +86 1370-114-3397

Shi Xudong
ICBC Precious Metals Department
T: +86 21 6329 9010