China approves establishment of Tibetan regional bank

09:13, July 25, 2011      

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China's top banking regulator announced Sunday that it has given the nod to the establishment of a regional bank in the Tibet Autonomous Region, with initial capital adding up to 1.5 billion yuan (233 million U.S. dollars).

The bank will be registered in Lhasa, the region's capital, and funded by 15 institutions, including the regional government, domestic banking institutions and several leading enterprises, the China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC) said in a statement posted on its website.

The bank will be the first regional corporate bank in the region and also the first equity commercial lender to operate in the autonomous region since its establishment, the CBRC said.

The Bank of Communications, China's fifth-largest lender, will be a strategic investor for the bank, the CBRC said.

The establishment of the bank will strengthen financial services in Tibet and help promote its regional economy, the CBRC said. It will also provide financial support for the development of local small- and medium-size enterprises, as well as for projects that will improve the livelihood of local residents, it said.

The CBRC did not give a detailed timetable for the bank's establishment.

There are currently just five commercial banks with subsidiaries in Tibet, most of which are located in the region's larger cities.

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