Singapore Bullion Market Association

Article List

Article List



The bullion market in Asia has gone through a radical transformation in the post-Covid era, resulting in increased opportunities for regional trading companies and local banks to seize market share left by exiting international banks.
In our view, there are major five challenges for Asia’s market players that need to be addressed through innovative and customised solutions:
  1. Minimal direct physical metal trade between producing and consuming countries in Asia.
  2. Reduced access to market liquidity.
  3. Limited role of regional commercial banks.
  4. Lack of financing options for metal inventory
  5. Hurdles for Asian champions to become global winners.
At FinMet, we are taking a close look at each of these issues, the reasons behind them and building possible pathways to solutions.
One of the most vexing aspects market observers note is that the vast share of gold and silver that is produced and exported from countries like Australia, Indonesia, Korea, Philippines and China, is sold to international bullion banks, which in turn deliver the metal to consuming Asian countries like China, Thailand, India, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Malaysia. The value of direct intra-Asia trade accounts for less than 15% of the market. Accordingly, we are working on building direct relationships between large producers and consumers by providing more market intelligence and understanding to both sides.
The reduced activity in Asia of some major international bullion banks has limited the ability of mid-tier players here to access liquidity. Opening a trading account with an established liquidity provider often takes 4-6 months and involves furnishing numerous disclosure documents. The consequent reduced market access adversely affects profit margins and increases market risk for these companies. We are introducing new trading platforms to the market and educating players on how to use these new tools.
Commercial banks in Asia tend to cater specifically to their domestic bullion market’s needs and have not really expanded their services beyond their home country into other countries in the region. The local banks in China (ICBC, BOC, CCB), India (ICICI, HDFC), Singapore (OCBC, DBS) and the UAE (Emirates NBD, NBF, RAK) have developed considerable expertise in physical trading, hedging and metal financing in their home markets, but have been shy to expand into other markets regionally. The reticence stems from a lack of risk appetite and in-depth knowledge about other bullion markets in the region. FinMet is working with some of these banks to help them develop an understanding of new markets and extend their product footprint for physical metal trading and financing.
Metal inventory financing has emerged as one of the critical needs of market players in Asia. We have structured new financing solutions that suit the credit policies of regional financial institutions by using the existing market infrastructure to enhance fungibility and transparency of the underlying metal being financed. These new products help mid-tier jewellers, industrials and traders to access a new source of liquidity to reduce their funding costs and improve their bottom-line.
Finally, one of the enduring themes across the bullion markets in Asia is the absence of regional leaders on the global stage. We identify leading, strong players in local markets who have been unable or unwilling to expand their activities globally in a meaningful way. Our goal is to educate these local leaders about opportunities in other markets and assist them to grow their presence on the global stage. We achieve this through education, strategic partnerships and opportunistic transactions.
As regional markets rebound in the wake of the pandemic, Asian corporates and financial institutions have a golden opportunity to overcome past challenges and solidify their position in the bullion markets. This move could boost their profitability, while raising their international profile.
At FinMet, we leverage our unique position – our feet firmly planted in the pivotal hubs of the Far East, Dubai, and India – to bridge these markets. Our in-depth product knowledge, acute market insight, and strategic global network are tailored to empower our clients to capitalise on these opportunities and achieve their ambitious goals.
SBMA Building Asian Bullion Tigers
FinMet’s management team (from left: Sunil Kashyap, Director; Pramod Mohan, Managing Director; Johnson Lewis, Managing Director).
SBMA Building Asian Bullion Tigers


is a pioneering force in the precious metals industry, catalyzing change with a global perspective and deep industry experience. Their innovative blend of technology and precious metals revolutionizes trading, financing, logistics, and risk management. Since 2021, they have aimed to lead the market by delivering flexible, affordable solutions tailored to stakeholders’ needs. With a seasoned management team boasting over 60 years of combined experience, they are committed to being a trusted ally, providing bespoke solutions th
SBMA Building Asian Bullion Tigers
PRAMOD MOHAN is Managing Director at FinMet Pte Ltd. He has over 25 years of international experience in commodities and financial markets, spanning across India, Australia, Far East, Middle East, and North America and works closely with various regulators and stakeholders in the UAE and India.