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|Thursday, May 10, 2001, updated at 22:56(GMT+8)|
Chinese Joint-Stock Banks Challenged by WTO Entry: ExpertExperts said Thursday that China's joint-stock banks should adapt to China's accession into the World Trade Organization (WTO) by quickening their globalization pace.
Lu Yucheng, chairman of Huaxia Bank, said at the World New Economy Forum of the Fourth Beijing High-tech Week, that China's WTO entry will expose the country's small and medium-sized joint- stock banks to threats from both large domestic commercial banks and foreign banking giants.
He said fundamental changes will take place in China's overall economic structure as well as corporate frameworks in the coming five years.
China's four state-owned commercial banks will sharpen their competitive edge through corporate restructuring and bring more pressure to joint-stock banks such as Huaxia.
Meanwhile, the incoming foreign banks are superior to China's joint-stock banks in terms of capital, technology and service lines and will push the latter to an even more unfavorable position in market competition.
Lu remarked that the only solution for banks such as Huaxia lies in upgrading the institution according to international norms and standards for commercial banks.
He said joint-stock banks have to continuously increase their asset value as well as delve into other financial services so as to realize their development goals.
Li Yining, China's leading economist, once said that the reform of China's banking industry demands measures such as enlarging the investor pool and seeking public listings to optimize the structure of assets.
Sources said China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) had allowed Huaxia Bank to go public as the fourth bank in China to float on the domestic stock markets.
Huaxia, which was founded in 1992 and has a total assets of some 11.5 billion U.S. dollars by the end of 2000, plans to seek initial public offerings (IPOs) on the Hong Kong and New York stock exchanges in three to four years.
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