(Yicai Global) July 3 -- China should open its financial services industry at a faster pace to attract more external competitors, said Li Fuan, chairman of China Bohai Bank. Li was speaking at a TV session jointly held by CBN Forum and World Economic Forum (WEF) during the Summer Davos 2017 held in Dalian, China.
"China's top leaders emphasized further relaxing restrictions on allowing foreign capital into China, which can be seen as a new signal to embrace more foreign capital, with a view to expanding the opening-up effect and pursuing the integration of global economy and finance in China's terms," Li said.
Li, who once held an important post in China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC), said China's financial and banking sectors, as well as its economy, have been benefiting from opening-up.
Public data indicate a recent slowdown in the growth pace of foreign banks in China, with their market share dropping from 4 percent to 2 percent. When responding to a question about this issue, Li said, "This is not because of China's restrictions on the development of those banks but due to their missing a whole lot of opportunities in the aftermath of international economic and financial crisis."
He said that Standard Chartered Bank, the second-largest shareholder of China Bohai Bank, bought a 19.9 percent stake in the first place, and going forward, Bohai Bank is slated to go public to further open to global investors.
Compared to the large banks in the world, the main feature of the banking institutions in China is their "big size" and there is some gap in terms of service quality, innovative abilities, management, the extent of specialization as well as corporate governance vis-à-vis foreign banks, he pointed out. To eliminate the outdated and learn from the advanced examples are an effective way, which can enhance openness and competition, he remarked.
Talking about the deleverage progress in China, Li said the excessive monetary lever would cause a big pressure on the real economy and the currency. "The Chinese market will be improved if the leverage is brought down to let the market have a stable macro-environment where the government exits to allow the market to play more roles."
In such a situation, the supervision from CBRC is necessary and positive, which can foster a fairer competitive environment for participants, he added.
Regarding future growth, Li stated that the total size of the Chinese economy is already very huge, so the most important thing for China is to progress at a constant speed and in a healthy way as any excessive braking and refueling may bring about big fluctuations.
Therefore, we need keep good control of the speed and force when seeing the obstacles or turnings on the road ahead, he said, stressing the stable development of the Chinese economy is the most important.