China's banking regulator cuts red tape for foreign players

China aims to further open up its banking sector by revising rules to simplify administrative procedures for foreign banks, a statement from the banking regulator said. 

The China Banking Regulatory Commission aims to boost the further opening up of the country’s banking sector by revising rules to simplify administrative procedures for foreign banks, according to a statement from the regulator during the weekend.

The move comes after President Xi Jinping’s call for “actively and steadily” promoting the opening up of China’s financial industry at the fifth national financial work conference and Zhu Guangyao, vice finance minister, said that China will open the investment door wider in an announcement last November.

The top banking watchdog added new provisions on the licensing conditions, procedures and application materials for foreign-funded banks to establish or invest in domestic banking financial institutions, which will provide a clear legal basis for the foreign players’ equity investments in the country.

The statement said that foreign banks will only need to report their services like overseas wealth management business and portfolio investment funds to the commission rather than obtaining its approval in advance.

To unify the market entry standards for domestic and foreign lenders, the regulator also revised rules on the opening of sub-branches of foreign-funded banks and simplified the administration procedures for them to appoint senior executives, issue bonds and seek other ways to supplement capital.

China has piloted the policy since earlier this month after soliciting the public opinions since last December.



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