Foreign banks may branch in China

Mar 12, 1997 01:00 AM

The People's Bank of China, the country's central bank, will approve foreign bank branches throughout the country on the basis of each region's needs, a bank official said recently. "There isn't a set limit on the number of branches any one foreign bank can have (in China)," said a central bank official.
The official was clarifying a remark by Dai Xianglong, the central bank governor, suggesting that foreign banks would face "appropriate restrictions" when applying to open further branches. Foreign bank branch applications are approved on a case-by-case basis and banks with sizeable business in a certain region are typically permitted to open a branch in that location, the official said. He said the restrictions mentioned by Dai would be enforced in cases when a bank wants to set up branches in areas where it has few business interests and the need for a branch is not obvious.
Foreign banks are allowed to maintain a branch and sub-branch in the Chinese cities of Shanghai, Guangzhou, Dalian and Tianjin. Sub-branches in Shanghai's Pudong area will be allowed to offer yuan-based services in the second quarter of this year. In other cities, foreign banks are limited to one branch per city and are restricted to providing foreign currency services.-

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