Fact Check: Is HSBC closing in Vishakapatnam? Here's why

A tweet by TDP general secretary Nara Lokesh regarding the closure of HSBC in Visakhapatnam has been shared quite a few hundred times.

By Misha Rajani  Published on  22 Dec 2021 6:00 AM GMT
Fact Check: Is HSBC closing in Vishakapatnam? Heres why

Hyderabad: A tweet by TDP general secretary Nara Lokesh regarding the closure of HSBC in Visakhapatnam has been shared quite a few hundred times. In the tweet, he blames the policies of the YSRCP government in Andhra Pradesh for several firms such as HSBC winding up their operations.

A part of the tweet reads, "While the subjectless CM is entertaining the three capitals, all the companies are queuing up for other states. Visakhapatnam, which became the financial capital and IT hub during the TDP regime, is now in its infancy. The closure of #HSBC , which has created thousands of job opportunities for the youths of north Andhra from the age of 15, is painful…The closure of HSBC, now headquartered in Visakhapatnam, is a testament to the incompetence of the state government." (Archive)

Fact Check:

HSBC decided to scale down its operations across India in 2016.

In 2016, HSBC decided to close 24 branches in 15 Indian cities in order to "reflect the changes in customer behavior, who are increasingly using digital channels for their banking". In a statement, HSBC said it will consolidate from 50 branches across 29 cities to 26 branches across 14 cities. The decision was said to impact only one per cent of the bank's total employees in the country. The bank said redeployment opportunities would be accorded to some of the affected employees. (Source: Indian Express, The Hindu)

The bank was planning to move out from retail banking slowly and work on wealth management. The move began in 2016 and is now slowly taking shape. Hence, the HSBC Visakhapatnam branch did not close because of government policies but because it was moving to Banking as a Service (BaaS).

HSBC also announced on its official website that the bank intends to broaden its BaaS offering with more solutions and is strategically repositioning US retail business towards international banking and wealth management and moving to banking as a BaaS model. It has also started closing down branches in the USA and UK.

The Andhra government fact-check team had refuted Nara Lokesh's tweet and said the HSBC Visakhapatnam branch is not closing because of the AP government. "HSBC is moving to BaaS slowly and closing most of its retail outlets worldwide," it had tweeted.

It should also be noted that the YSRCP was not in power in Andhra Pradesh in 2016. The party came to power only in 2019. Clearly, it is not connected to any decisions made by HSBC regarding closing down its Visakhapatnam branch.

Thus, it is clear that the decision to shut down HSBC in Visakhapatnam is not recent and neither is it linked to the YSRCP. The bank has decided to shift to BaaS model and started scaling down its operations in India in 2016.

Claim Review:AP government’s policies led to the closure of HSBC in Visakhapatnam.
Claimed By:TDP general secretary Nara Lokesh.
Claim Reviewed By:Newsmeter
Claim Source:TDP general secretary Nara Lokesh.
Claim Fact Check:False
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