Shanghai banks pledge to help small business

Tracy Li
A meeting held by the Shanghai Banking Association was aimed at supporting the central government's calls for financial institutions to help boost the real economy.
Tracy Li

Shanghai banks said on Tuesday they would aim to provide more innovative and customized financial products and services to help private businesses grow, especially the small and medium-sized enterprises as well as technological startups. 

The move announced at a meeting held by the Shanghai Banking Association is aimed at supporting the central government's calls for financial institutions to help boost the real economy.

The banks also pledged to help support the development of the China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone and promote further integration of the Yangtze River Delta area.

Xu Bin, president of the Bank of Communications’ Shanghai branch, said that the banks would mobilize more resources this year to better serve the local economy.

This includes plans to provide local shipping companies with comprehensive financial services including investment banking and cash management to boost Shanghai’s efforts to become an international shipping center.

Shanghai Rural Commercial Bank Deputy Party Secretary Gu Jianzhong said the bank would increase "financial inclusion"by extending at least 200 billion yuan (US$29.7billionn) in credit to private enterprises and small companies within the next three years to reduce their borrowing costs and improve their access to capital.

It also aims to cultivate and support up to 100 small and medium technology firms over the same period.

By the end of 2018, the bank had extended credit to as many as 12,000 small and micro enterprises and had a loan balance of 128 billion yuan.

Shanghai Pudong Development Bank, a joint-stock commercial lender, vowed to innovate more free trade-related banking solutions to better serve its customers' cross-border transactions.

So far this year, the local banking industry has seen healthy growth.

Total assets hit 15.5 trillion yuan by the end of February, up 5.4 percent year on year, and loans grew 9.4 percent annually to 7.5 trillion yuan, with a 0.81 percent non-performing loans ratio, data from the Shanghai bureau of the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission showed.

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