By Yin Lei
Commercial banks in China are on track to launch their asset management companies as this country's banking and insurance regulator gives more greenlights to related requests.
The China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC) on Feb. 15 permitted Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) to set up its asset management company, according to an announcement at the CBIRC's official website made on Feb. 17.
With this approval, China's five largest banks had all got a nod from the CBIRC to establish such a subsidiary, which aside from the ICBC include Agricultural Bank of China (ABC), Bank of China (BOC), China Construction Bank (CCB) and Bank of Communications (BOCOM).
In November 2018, the ICBC said it would use its own funds, at an amount not exceeding 16 billion yuan (2.36 billion U.S. dollars), to found a fully-owned asset management company. The registered capital of the above four other banks vary from 8 billion yuan (1.18 billion U.S. dollars) to 15 billion yuan (2.21 billion U.S. dollars).
The CBIRC also said in its Feb. 17 announcement that it had received requests from a number of commercial banks to set up their asset management companies and several other banks were planning to submit such applications.
The banking and insurance regulator has been fast in nodding its consent to such requests. The BOC and the CCB previously saw their applications passed just over one month after making public their plans to establish their asset management companies. This quick approval reflected CBIRC's hope to facilitate the transformation of banks' asset management business to its proper way, analysts said.
The Administrative Measures for Asset Management Companies of Commercial Banks, as released by the CBIRC in December 2018, offer six months for China's commercial banks to prepare for the launch of their asset management companies after getting an approval to do so. The first one of them may become operational as early as in the first half of 2019.