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ICBC (Canada) Account Opening Witness Service (AOWS)

☆ Introduction
This is an ICBC service for you to open overseas account via ICBC branches in China. Through the service, you will be able to open an ICBC (Canada) account at the designated branch in China before your departure. It helps you to start managing your accounts before landing in Canada by using our global remittance service. You could activate your online banking and pick up your global debit card and personal cheque after your departure.

☆ Unique Benefits
1. Chinese services: the application forms provided by us are written in simplified Chinese, which helps you to better understand all terms and rights before submitting your application. ICBC (Canada) also provides thoughtful Chinese services to help you to avoid and handle inconveniences that is caused by differences in culture and language.
2. Full range of services: you can manage your accounts through our counters, ATMs, telephone banking, online banking, etc.
3. Competitive service charge fees: ICBC (Canada) keeps service charges at a very competitive level compared with our counterparts. We strive to keep our remittance fees at a level that is lower than the industrial average, in order to help customers to save more money from day-to-day banking with us.
4. Worldwide Acceptance: the global debit card issued by ICBC (Canada) can be worldwide used. No service charge applied when you purchase at all the POS in mainland China. You could also withdraw money from all the ATMs in mainland china. In addition, no service charges when you purchase at the POS with Union Pay logo outside mainland China and Canada (such as Hong Kong, the Unite States., etc.).
5. Security: you can easily wire money to the ICBC (Canada) account opened in advance before your departure, which helps you to mitigate the risk of carrying a large amount of cash during the trip.
6. Easy to use: you can pick up your global debit card and personal cheque at the designated branch as soon as you arrive in Canada, which saves you a lot of time from opening a new account.

☆ Unique Product – Student Banking Plan
If you are student coming to Canada for study, Student Banking Plan offered by ICBC (Canada) provides a full range of financial services to make you an easy life.
Student Banking Plan includes:
1. Global Debit Card - One Card that Gives You the Global Horizon
• One Card: One Card can satisfy all of your financial requirements in an efficient manner. It gets you the convenience of making purchases or withdrawal.
• Two Settlement Currencies: Your payment will be settled in CNY in Mainland China and in CAD outside Mainland China.
• Three Network:
Interac®: a Canadian national payment network that allows customers to access their money through ATMs and POS across Canada.
THE EXCHANGE® Network: an interbank network in North America, which connects over 2,400 ATMs in Canada, and over 316,000 ATMs and 2,300,000 POS in the United States. It helps you to do easy purchase in North America and saves on service charge.
China UnionPay: a global card organization linking all the ATMs and POS throughout Mainland China, all the ATMs and 0.1 million stores in Hong Kong, 1.5 million PIN using stores in the United States, and the ATMs and stores in Asia, Europe, Africa, etc.
• Four Savings:
Save on ATM Withdrawal Fees: NO service charge on THE EXCHANGE® Network in North America.
Save on Foreign Exchange Fee: CNY Account is the priority when you use this Card in Mainland China. No need to worry about foreign exchange.
Save on Currency Conversion Fee: 2.5% currency conversion fee will be exempted when you use this Card in the UnionPay global acceptance network all around the world.
Save on Automatic Funds Transfer: If the balance of your CNY account is not enough, fund will be automatically transferred from your CAD account to your CNY account at current rate. No need to worry about carrying large amount of CNY.
• Value-Added services: Global Debit Card can be used like a local debit card in Mainland China and enjoy much more convenience compared to foreign debit cards.
2. Student Account
ICBC (Canada) provide students with preferential chequing account which can help students save with no monthly fee, no minimum balance, unlimited transactions and free personal cheque and bank draft.
Identifications to open a Student Account include, but not limited to, one photo ID、student card and admission offer.
3. Online Banking
ICBC (Canada) offers a wide variety of Online Banking Services including balance inquiry, bill payment, money transfer, global remittance, etc. You can choose password card, ICBC USB Key, or electronic password device as authentication medium based on your personal needs.
Low service charge for Online Banking: Only 12 CAD for each online global remittance. No service charge for online bill payment, inter-transfer, etc.
4. Global Remittance
ICBC (Canada) offers you the safe, fast and efficient Inward Remittance Service. If you remit within ICBC Group, no intermediate bank is need with the highest remittance amount and the fastest experience!
You need to provide us following details when you want to transfer CAD or USD from Mainland China.(Field 56A\57A\59A refers to 56A, 57A and 59A respectively in Remittance Application Form)

Field 56A:


Field 57A:


Field 59A:

Account Number (19 digitals), Name, Address and Phone Number

Inward Remittance Service Charge: 10 CAD per transaction
5. Student Loan
ICBC(Canada)offers flexible financing for all types of loan services, including Home Mortgage Loans, Auto Loans, etc. Our services can help with your financial plan and to build up your local credit history.
6. Co-manage your account
All the joint account holders have access to online banking and detailed account information. Joint account enables parents to monitor the account transactions and to help their children to build up efficient financial plans.

☆ AOWS Procedure
1. You need to provide a valid ID, including but not limited to, resident identification card (for Chinese resident), valid Passport with VISA, etc., and fill out application forms.
2. The designated branch will then sends all your account opening documents and profiles to ICBC (Canada) for subsequent follow-ups.
3. After ensuring the documents have all the required information, ICBC (Canada) will then send a copy of “Account Opening Confirmation” to you within 3 business days. After your affirmation, you can start to wire money into your new ICBC (Canada) account.
4. You could pick up your global debit card, personal cheque and password envelopes at the counter of designated branch by showing your passport or other valid IDs and Account Opening Confirmation.

☆ FAQs about AOWS
1. When can I do global remittance after submitting the AOWS application? What is the maximum amount I could wire?
ICBC (Canada) will send you a copy of “Account Opening Confirmation” within 3 business days after your submission. You could proceed your remittance after receiving that document. Please refer to SAFE (State Administration of Foreign Exchange) for more information on remittance limitation.
2. Can I use the ICBC (Canada) global debit card to withdraw money from ATMs both inside and outside Mainland China?
(1) You could withdraw cash from over 38,000 ATMs in China. (PIN change, account transfer or money depositing are not allowed)
(2) You have access to all the ATMs with the Union Pay logo worldwide.
(3) You are able to do account balance inquiry, cash withdrawal, and PIN change on ICBC (Canada) ATMs.
(4) You are able to do purchases worldwide on all POS labeled the Union Pay logo.
3. What's customer service hotline of ICBC (Canada)?
For customers in China, please call: 95588;
For customers in Canada, please call: 1-877-779-5588.
4. Is there any difference between accounts opened in China and those opened in Canada?
5. What are the other products and services provided by ICBC (Canada) besides debit card and cheque service?
We also offer High Interest Rate Term Deposit in CNY/CAD/USD, global remittance, loan service, currency exchange, a variety of accounts, etc.
6. How can I achieve account co-management?
Open a joint account with a maximum of 6 account holders and activate online banking. Each account holder is entitled to have a debit card, and has full access to online banking and detailed account information.

☆ Contact Us

Locate Us

Opening Hours (Local Time)

Toronto Downtown Branch
Tel: (416) 607-2087
Address: Yonge Richmond Centre Suite 110, 151 Yonge St. Toronto, Ontario Canada M5C 2W7

Monday to Friday: 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Richmond Hill Main Branch
Tel: (905) 882-8182
Address: Suite 102-103, 350 Highway 7 East, Richmond Hill, Ontario Canada L4B 3N2

Monday to Thursday: 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Friday: 9:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Saturday: 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Markham Branch
Tel: (905) 940-2218
Address: Unit B-88, Pacific Mall 4300 Steeles Avenue East Markham, Ontario Canada L3R 0Y5

Monday to Thursday: 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Friday: 10:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Saturday: 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Mississauga Branch
Tel: (905) 890-2388
Address: 25 Watline Avenue Suite GR05 Mississauga, Ontario Canada L4Z 2Z1

Monday to Thursday: 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Friday: 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Scarborough Branch
Tel: (416) 298-6883
Address: Unit 38, Dynasty Center 8Glen Watford Drive Scarborough, Ontario Canada M1S 2C1

Monday to Thursday: 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Friday: 9:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Saturday: 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Richmond Branch, Vancouver
Tel: (604) 278-9668
Address: 6740 No. 3 Road Richmond, British Columbia Canada V6Y 2C2

Monday to Friday: 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Vancouver City Branch
Tel: (604) 709-9668
Address: 3396 Cambie Street Vancouver, British Columbia Canada V5Z 2W5

Monday to Friday: 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

The above is for reference only. Details refer to the rules drawn up by local ICBC branch. To save your time, please call your local ICBC before applying for the service.
Personal Finance