Banking on foreign investment: recent developments

China''s WTO commitments provides new possibilities for business development says Baker & McKenzie.

Since China's accession to the World Trade Organization WTO, foreign banks have been waiting patiently for the opportunity to participate more actively in China's banking industry. China's WTO commitments provided new possibilities for business development but rather than opening the floodgates, China has welcomed a steady influx of foreign banks.

As of the end of October 2003, 191 business establishments had been set up in China by 62 foreign-funded banks from 19 countries and regions. Of these, 84 had obtained the authority to engage in Renminbi business. Though the stated objective of the China Banking Regulatory Commission the CBRC is eventually to bring these institutions under the same regulatory regime...

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