Citigroup Inc. aims to triple the size of its branch network in China to about 100 outlets within three years as the U.S. bank vies with HSBC Holdings PLC for a bigger slice of the nation's banking market.

"We are very excited about China," Stephen Bird, Citigroup's co-chief executive officer for the Asia-Pacific region, said in a Bloomberg TV interview. "For us, this is still the beginning of the China story."

Citigroup, the third-biggest U.S. bank, trails London-based HSBC, which operates 105 outlets in the world's second-largest economy. It currently has 31 outlets in China. Bird said Citigroup will add outlets in Changsha in Hunan province and Nanjing in Jiangsu province. Standard Chartered PLC has 61 outlets in China.

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