Saturday, 20 January, 2018

China eases foreign ownership restrictions on financial firms

China eases foreign ownership restrictions on financial firms China eases foreign ownership restrictions on financial firms
Conrad Doyle | 10 November, 2017, 12:26

China will allow overseas firms to take controlling stakes in local securities ventures and remove foreign ownership limits on its banks, as the country continues to liberalize its mammoth financial industry.

During his trip to Beijing this week, Trump said that trade between the two nations was unfair, and called for greater market access for US companies.

"All foreign players will be allowed to hold a majority stake in joint ventures with mainland Chinese securities companies, life insurance companies and Chinese banks", the South China Morning Post reported quoting Zhu.

The limits will be phased out in three years. Market experts said that the announcement was good news for foreign banks, although they remain cautious on China's overall financial system.

Foreign investors have been complaining for a long time that the lack of control of a financial company makes their business hard. The limit has made it hard for foreign banks to play any major role in the Chinese market.

"Opening up the financial sector in particular could greatly improve the allocation of financial resources and support China's future development", said William Zarit, chairman of the American Chamber of Commerce in China.

The move, announced by Zhu Guangyao, the vice finance minister, comes a day after U.S. President Donald Trump repeated calls for better access to Chinese markets in meetings with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

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