Banking reform in China: Driven by international standards and Chinese specifics
AbstractThis paper reviews the progress of banking reforms in China over the last five years. The stated goal of reform is to “transform major banks into internationally competitive joint‐stock commercial banks with appropriate corporate governance structures, adequate capital, stringent internal controls, safe and sound business operations, quality services as well as desirable profitability.” The reform strategy relies on three pillars – extensive publicly financed bailouts, implementation of the international best practices in bank governance and regulation and listing of major banks at the Hong Kong stock exchange. This strategy has been successful in stabilizing the three major banks. However, our review of academic and commercial research indicates that there is no evidence that the stabilization is sustainable. Prudential indicators of the largest banks are comparable to international averages, but this is an outcome of large bail outs and ongoing credit boom rather than fundamental change in banker’s incentives. Reforms of bank governance and regulatory framework need more time to proliferate throughout the banking and regulatory hierarchies. However, time alone would not solve the problem as the reform design retains important departures from international standards. These standards are implemented in a selective manner; those aspects that help to concentrate key powers in the center are implemented rather vigorously, whereas principles that require independence of banks’ boards and regulators are ignored. Thus the largest Chinese banks remain under the firm state control and can be used as development policy tools for the better or the worse.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 7320.
Date of creation: Oct 2007
Date of revision:
China; banks; reform; international standards;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- G28 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Government Policy and Regulation
- G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
- P34 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Institutions and Their Transitions - - - Finance
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2008-03-01 (All new papers)
- NEP-BAN-2008-03-01 (Banking)
- NEP-CNA-2008-03-01 (China)
- NEP-TRA-2008-03-01 (Transition Economics)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
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