World Media

China Merges Banking, Insurance Regulators

China Merges Banking, Insurance Regulators

The institutional reform plan of the State Council was submitted to the on-going first session of the 13th National People's Congress for deliberation, reports Xinhua news agency.

Certain CBRC and CIRC functions, including drafting key regulations and prudential oversight, will be moved to the PBOC, according to the proposal unveiled on Tuesday.

"China's whole regulatory system will change directions, from sector oversight to oversight of specific financial activities", said Betty Wang an economist at ANZ Bank.

Financial regulators have cracked down on major companies - even taking over Anbang Insurance this year - to get a handle on the building risk and unwieldy debt that some analysts worry pose a serious threat to China's financial stability.

Several new ministries will be created, including a more encompassing Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Areas as well as ministries for emergency management, ecology and environment, and veteran affairs.

Xi, 64, is set to continue for a life term as the NPC approved the removal of the two-term limit for the president and the vice president.

"Deepening the reform of the party and state institutions is an inevitable requirement for strengthening the long-term governance of the party", Liu said in the commentary in the official People's Daily.

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The draft also includes a new immigration bureau and changes to the tax system.

There will also be new administrations, such as an global development cooperation agency, a state immigration administration, and a banking and insurance regulatory commission.

The securities and state assets regulators were not mentioned among the proposed changes.

China announced plans to merge regulators responsible for $43 trillion of financial assets, creating a new body with enhanced oversight of its banking and insurance industries.

Compared with the current setup of cabinet administrations, the number of ministerial-level entities is reduced by eight and that of vice-ministerial-level entities by seven.

Speculation that China was considering the creation of a super financial regulator has been rife since the Chinese stock market crash of 2015, blamed in part on poor inter-agency coordination. The regulators have focused on curbing the growth of wealth management products, trust products, and interbank liabilities, which fuel a vast parallel-financing industry in China.


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