In Focus
RETAIL BANKING | Staff Reporter, Taiwan
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Mainland Chinese banks gear up to invest in Taiwan banks

But the question is, who will be the first to do so?

Taiwan anxiously awaits the first mainland Chinese bank to buy a stake in a Taiwanese financial institution after new rules allowing mainland banks to do this took effect this week.

“No Chinese banks have applied (to buy a stake),” but some have shown interest, Financial Supervisory Commission Vice Chairwoman Lee Jih-chu said on the sidelines of an event to launch the Financial Ombudsman Institution.

The financial regulator announced in December that Chinese banks can individually acquire up to 5% of a Taiwanese bank or financial holding company, or they can buy a 10% stake if joined by Chinese qualified domestic institutional investors.

In order to qualify, the Chinese banks must have had no major violations in the five years prior to filing the application.

They must also be among the world’s 200 largest banks in terms of either capital or assets for one year before applying for the acquisition, be engaged in international banking operations and have a financial structure strong enough to meet regulatory guidelines.

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