Posts Tagged ‘small loan company’

Recent Microfinance Activity in China-Grameen Bank, SKS, and HSBC

Posted in MF Marketplace on October 15th, 2009 by Yam Ki – 7 Comments

Sorry I haven’t been posting much lately.  Classes and midterms at SIPA seem to be getting in the way.  If only I could count my blog posts as papers for class!

Lately, there has been a few noteworthy news pieces on China’s microfinance development.  Dr. Yunus announced at the Clinton Global Initiative that it will be starting a bank in Sichuan.  Jack Ma’s Alibaba is said to contribute $5 million to kick start lending.  Dr. Yunus has been trying to start a true Grameen Bank in China since 2006.  I am not sure if the small loan company license (小额贷款公司) has been issued yet, but you have to give them credit for trying.  Perhaps the announcement is to increase pressure for the government to hand over licenses quick.

Vikram Akula of SKS recently wrote an Op-Ed in the WSJ about opening up investments in MFIs in China.  He is definitely correct in pointing out that most casual observers who sees China as ‘developed’ and don’t need microfinance is wrong.  He is also correct that the sector needs to open up.  But I would have like to see what his ideas are in terms of liberalizing the sector.  Allowing foreign investment is definitely one option (which he is, of course, interested in), but what else can China do domestically?  Are there different models that he can share given India and SKS’s experience?  As he pointed out, current regulations do not allow MFIs to take deposits.  What then, are the risks of the MFIs?  What should MFIs who do not take deposits be aware of in terms of managing risks?

Lastly, a press release from from HSBC came out yesterday that it has partnered with Women’s World Banking (WWB) in provided microloans through its rural banks in China, specifically in Hebei’s Suizhou branch and Chongqing Dazu branch.  According to a Caijing article, the product is called “Happy Loans” (”贷款乐”).  The product has been piloting for 3 months in Suizhou and is currently being expanded.  What is WWB’s role in this partnership?  Is it providing operational expertise?  If so, does this mean that WWB (and perhaps MFIs in general) is better at assessing credit worthiness of low-income borrowers than a large multinational bank such as HSBC?  Or is HSBC simply outsourcing it’s operation activities to WWB?  From previous research, it seems that HSBC Rural Bank’s branches tend to focus only on export oriented areas (mostly exporting mushrooms actually), specifically for SMEs.  Are they moving away from SME finance and moving towards ‘real’ microfinance?  What are the terms of the loans?

Questions to ponder during my midterms.

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Quick Lessons from China Association of Microfinance / CICETE

Posted in Finance Policy, MF Talent on July 2nd, 2009 by Yam Ki – Be the first to comment

I had a meeting with a source at the China Association of Microfinance / China International Center for Economic and Technical Exchanges (CICETE) yesterday and learned a few things:

1) Small Loan Company (小额贷款公司) is really Microcredit Company version 2 (小额信贷公司).

Apparently the CBRC never intended for the microcredit company to be completely “credit” base. They wanted them to provide loans with collateral / guarantees; hence the rename and new law. read more »

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First Small Loan Company Registered in Xinjiang

Posted in Finance Policy, Xinjiang on June 27th, 2009 by Yam Ki – Be the first to comment

I came across an interesting press release about a set of Small Loan Companies (SLCs) that just got registered in Urumqi, Xinjiang this morning.

The Uyghur Autonomous Region Government issued a pilot test program guideline for SLCs in February 2009. A total of 11 firms applied to register and 5 were provided the license. The largest is Huachun Small Loan Company (华春小额贷款股份有限公司), the focus of the press release.

A few facts of particular interest from the press release that I noticed were: read more »

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Banking on an Exit for Small Loan Companies

Posted in Finance Policy on June 19th, 2009 by Yam Ki – Be the first to comment


Today, the China Banking and Regulatory Commission (CBRC) released a directive on converting Small Loan Companies (SLCs / 额贷公司) to Village Banks (VBs / 村镇银行).  It seems that the explosion of SLC and related credit over the past year is making the CBRC a little nervous.  According to the press release for the directive, as of March 2009, there are already 583 SLCs opened and another 573 in preparation.

Institutionalized in May of 2008, the SLCs were People’s Bank of China (PBoC) and CBRC’s attempt to reinvigorate read more »

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