Wellington Scoop

Five-year contract for CitiBank to handle NZ diplomats’ annual $110m spending

News from BusinessDesk
Citibank has won a five-year global banking contract to handle the $110 million spent by New Zealand’s diplomatic posts each year.

The successful tender was announced on the Government Electronic Tenders Service website. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade first advertised the contract last year with the aim of cutting its international banking costs and outsourcing payroll services at its overseas posts.

It wanted to consolidate 73 bank accounts with 34 banks in 38 currencies and across 48 countries into one banking relationship, the original tender documents said.

Foreign posts generate 42,000 banking transactions a year, with a third of those valued at less than $250. A lack of automation means it uses significant staff time while head office can’t accurately assess its true costs, the tender documents said.

MFAT also wants more control over foreign exchange contracts. The ministry spends an annual $325 million in foreign currency, including its aid programmes.