Despite unexpected macro business environment alteration, Postal Savings Bank of China (hereinafter is referred to as Savings Bank) managed a good development in its various business operations in 2008. Its savings deposit balance was up to RMB 2.08 trillion for the year, with a historical record of newly added deposit for the year as high as RMB 358.4 billion, an increase of 20.82% over the previous year, of which RMB 759.5 billion was current deposits, accounting for 36.51% of the total. The foreign currency savings deposit was USD 49.62 million, of which USD 19.53 million was newly added in the year, increased by 64.91%. By the end of 2008, we have savings service outlets 36.7 thousand in number, of which 27.25% was in urban areas, 19.5% in county towns and 53.25% in places lower than county level, with a total of 116.3 thousand employees in the services.
Corporation's business In June 2008, the Savings Bank started its services of absorption of business savings deposits, check services and interbank transfer etc. to businesses throughout the country. By the end of December in the year, we had had 2542 service windows open to businesses, with nearly 91.7 thousand business accounts and the total savings deposits from business accounts up to RMB 59.091 billion, handled for customers 881.7 thousand payment settlements, valuing RMB 476.7 billion. Corporation business development has already taken shape.
Agent business In 2008 we surpassed a new milestone in our individual settlement business throughout the country, with newly issued green cards of 76.71 million pcs, which accounted for part of a total of green card holders up to 270 million. 264.92 million remittances were handled, representing an increase of 15.17%, valuing RMB 621.2 billion, a year-on-year growth of 33.44%. The international remittances we handled cumulatively in 2008, were 2.43 million pcs in number, increased by 11.91% over the previous year, valuing $3.6 billion, a growth of 8.66% more than the previous year. As far as interprovincial business was concerned, a total volume of 815 million pcs of this sort happened, valuing RMB 2.62 trillion, increased by 13.70% and 0.84% respectively. The amount of factoring business we traded in the year was RMB 665.891 billion, a jump of 11.65% from the previous year. Our agent business in connection with insurance saw a historical record, with a yearly premium collected totaling RMB 99.09 billion, a big jump of 84.28% from the previous year and the total amount of insurance claims paid in RMB 7.721 billion. Occupying 20.4% of bank-related insurance market, we had had a cumulative total number of policy holder accounts of 42.6247 million, 4.7762 million more than last year.
With the aid of our National Bonds System available In January 2008, we realized a yearly total amount of the sales of certificated national bonds of RMB 2.6 billion, a yearly payment of bonds due in the year of RMB 3.8 billion and the yearly sales of savings national bonds of RMB 1.26 billion. The development of our financing business began taking an initial shape in 2008. Our savings banks sold cumulatively RMB 24.53 billion out of 26 financing products we developed in the year, with a total amount of earnings distributed in RMB 37.32 million. The sales of foreign currency financing products hit USD 15.04 million out of 11 products. Presently, there are 224 thousand financing customer accounts with our bank, with an average subscribed amount of RMB 109 thousand yuan each account. The business of our agency sales of funds saw a big plunge in the year 2008 due to adverse impact struck upon us of the market environment. The cumulative yearly sales amount was only RMB 9.832 billion out of 149 funds, decreased by 87.91%, with a total amount redeemed RMB 11.28 billion, a big plunge of 58.12% from the previous year. The unredeemed shares of funds were 52.475 billion. In March 2008, the business of sale/settlement of foreign currencies was launched at the bank. By the end of December of 2008, we had opened to public 1360 foreign exchange outlets. The yearly cumulative number of foreign currency sales and settlements through foreign currency administration's system was 263.1 thousand pcs, valuing USD 379 million. Credit business By the end of 2008, the total amount of loan balance of the bank hit RMB 261.403 billion, increased in RMB 151.42 billion, which represented a 127% growth over the previous year, where syndicated credit balance stood at 229.519 billion, a big growth of RMB123.9 billion from last year. The balance of mini loans booked RMB 26.642 billion yuan, an increase of 26.586 billion by comparison with the same period last year. The balance of loans in connection with deposit receipt impawn registered 4.055 billion yuan, representing a decrease of 252 million by comparison with the same period last year. The balance of commercial loan for individuals' business recorded RMB 1.131 billion, RMB 1.131 billion more than the same period of last year. Registered balance of newly added house mortgage loans booked 56 million. By the end of 2008, the balance of interbank discount notes of the savings bank registered RMB 13.346 billion, a 62.96% up to RMB 5.156 billion.
Capital operation The development business of our capital operation continued in a rapid way. The registered balance of operating assets up to RMB 1.354414 trillion, a growth of 42.01% over the previous year, indicated that our efforts in adjusting assets structures turned out to be an eminent success, with our assets portfolio, structure of time limits and interests etc. becoming more and more optimized and we are going to face less risks in our operation. Serving "three agriculturals (serving agricultural industry, serving agricultural villages and serving agricultural people)" During the reform course of our savings bank, we have always been keeping in mind that serving three agriculturals is one of our important duties. In pursuance of overall implementing scientific outlook on development, and starting from exact conditions and fully taking the advantages of our own, we tried all possible channels to provide services to three agriculturals. Along with the expansion of our banking business, we have done a lot of practical work in returning funds to counties and rural areas, increasing fund supplies to countryside, improving financing services in rural areas and tackling problems that it was difficult for farmers to gain loans. The financial services we provided for the broad rural areas were in such a broad range that it started from traditional debt and factoring business including savings deposit services, remittances, agency payments and collections through such retail credit business as deposit receipt impawn loans and mini loans etc, that had directly answered the financing demands of broad farmers, forming in rural area a financial service system that is very swift and convenient in services with its sound functions and advanced technologies. Meanwhile the efforts we made in providing rural areas with funds for their infrastructure construction through fund market and syndicated loans has played more and more important roles in the construction of socialist new countryside. Up to the end of 2008, our mini loan services had been available in our 16 thousand outlets in more than 2 thousand counties of 31 provinces across the country, of which 72% are located at places at or lower than county level. The yearly cumulative mini loans we released were 474.6 thousand, equivalent to the amount of RMB 31.101 billion with outstanding loans of this kind of 431.1 thousand pcs, amounting to RMB 26.642 billion. The yearly cumulative deposit receipt impawn loans we released were 808.1 thousand pcs, valuing RMB 32.348 billion with a total number of outstanding loans of this kind of 111 thousand pcs, valuing RMB 4.055 billion. We also released agriculture-related syndicated loans worth RMB 7.302 billion out of 66 contracts, with a total outstanding in RMB 6.827 billion.