(Yicai Global) Jan. 28 -- Yi Huiman, previously the head of China's largest lender by assets, has been named the new chairman of the China Securities Regulatory Commission. It will be his task to pick up the slack on capital market reforms amid slowing economic growth.
Yi, who started as a clerk at Industrial and Commercial Bank of China in 1985, will replace Liu Shiyu, who is stepping down after almost three years as head of the CSRC to chair the All China Federation of Supply and Marketing Cooperatives, the country's biggest agricultural co-op.
Yi will have his work cut out for him. A new sci-tech board is due to launch in Shanghai this year. President Xi Jinping announced last November that the new trading venue would be formed to help Chinese startups seek funding. The board was officially approved last week. Yi now needs to implement it.
He will also have to deal with a toughening macroeconomic environment. The capital markets will be severely tested by pressures facing the economy, Premier Li Keqiang said at a cabinet meeting this month.
China's mainland stock market performed badly during Liu's three years at the CSRC. The Shanghai Composite Index fell almost 10 percent to 2,601.72 points at the close on Jan. 25 from 2,888.6 on Feb. 22, 2016. He had previously chaired the Agricultural Bank of China.
Liu promoted the issuance of new shares on the mainland, and the number of listed companies exceeded 3,500 under his tenure. He supported the launch of stock connect schemes between Shenzhen and Hong Kong in 2016 and the upcoming Shanghai-London link. He also hailed the inclusion of Chinese stocks into global indexes such as those of MSCI.
Liu was known for his tight regulatory grip. He set a record for the highest number of penalties and fines in three consecutive years. In 2018, the number of penalties reached 310 and fines hit CNY10.6 billion (USD1.6 billion).
Editor: Emmi Laine