China’s banking system has a three-tier structure and is completely under the control of the State


The first level is formed by the People Bank of China as well as Development Banks

The People  Bank, as equity, is indeed a credit, payment and settlement center of the Country. It is  responsible for the design and conduct of monetary policy and oversight over the banking system which carries out the norms of the Chinese Banking Regulation Commission. 

Three Development Banks exist  – the State Development  Bank of China, the Agricultural Development  Bank of China, and the Export-Import Bank of China. They are responsible for implementing State programs in the industrial, agricultural, and foreign trade areas, respectively.

The basis of China’s banking system are state-owned commercial banks, among which the leaders orthe “Big Four‘. Namely: Bank of China, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, China Construction Bank, Agricultural Bank of China. 

State-owned commercial banks are both urban and rural in their scope of operation. Large commercial banks are allocated to a special category, and it is the prerogative of the government to modernize and improve the efficiency of state-owned banks.

The presence of banks under the control of non-residents in the Chinese banking system is not as extensive as in other countries, since the ban on their activities in China was lifted only after the country’s accession to the WTO.

Also on the second level are various financial companies that carry out banking operations: asset management corporations, trust investment companies, leasing financial companies.

To counter the traditional institution in  China, there is a developed system of urban and rural cooperatives, which is the basis for financing small and medium-sized businesses in the country and occupies the third level of the banking system. It exists in the forms of agricultural and urban credit cooperatives.

References from internet/non internet sources. 

Number of branches of commercial banks in China 2012-2019

Published by Statista Research Department, Sep 22, 2020 

In 2019, the number of commercial bank branches in China amounted to 101 thousand. At the same time, almost 200 commercial banks were operating in the country that issued more than seven billion debit cards to their customers

Number of commercial bank branches in China from 2012 to 2019 (in 1,000s)

Number of bank branches in thousands

2019 101.61

2018 101.33

2017 100.06

2016 99.46

2015 95.68

2014 89.81

2013 86.71

2012 85.36

Showing entries 1 to 8 (8 entries in total)



Quarterly NPL stock of the banking sector in China 2016-2019

Ratio of non-performing loans (NPL) in China’s whole banking system 2010-2019

Quarterly special mention loan stock of the banking sector in China 2016-2019

Quarterly capital adequacy ratio of commercial banks in China Q1 2018-Q2 2020

Equity ratio and core capital ratio of leading listed Chinese banks 2018

Quarterly banking industry climate index in China Q2 2017-Q2 2020

Rate article
Add a comment