Citigroup has been granted approval by the China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC) to open a branch in the city of Guiyang, reported the Asian Banker. The new branch will be Citi's tenth branch in China and will officially open in the first half of 2010.

The new branch will offer a range of product and service offerings. It will cater to institutional clients, including through the provision of advice and services to small-and-medium enterprises. Citi’s consumer banking business will provide a range of general banking services. The branch will also feature wealth management service CitiGold.

Vikram Pandit, CEO of Citi, said: “China is critically important to Citi and our long-term growth ambitions, and remains one of Citi’s priority markets around the world. We are committed to pursuing growth across multiple lines of business in China, and our plan to open a new branch in Guiyang reflects our intent to expand in China this year and beyond.”

Stephen Bird, CEO of Citi Asia Pacific, said: “We are delighted to commence 2010 with approval to open a branch in Guiyang. This news follows the opening of our Chongqing branch last December, and adds momentum to the expansion of our network in China. We look forward to bringing world-class banking and wealth management services to companies and individuals in Guiyang in the near future.”

Citi currently operates nine corporate bank branches and 28 consumer outlets in China, in Beijing, Shanghai, Hangzhou, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Tianjin, Dalian, Chengdu, and Chongqing.

Citi currently operates three lending companies China. The New York-based lender maintains investments in two Chinese banks, Shanghai Pudong Development Bank and Guangdong Development Bank.