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China to Further Joint-stock Reform of Banks
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Chinese central bank governor Zhou Xiaochuan said recently that China will continue to further its joint-stock reform of state-owned commercial banks.


Zhou gave positive comments on the reform of Bank of China, China Construction Bank and the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China. But he stressed that the achievements are preliminary and the reform is complicated and full of hardships.


The three commercial banks will continue to improve corporate governance and speed up change of management mechanism to prevent rebounding of non-performing loans and drop of profits, Zhou said.


Further reform will go on to set up a binding and inspiring mechanism by allowing the bank staff to hold shares and the senior executives to hold stock futures of the banks.


The central bank will regroup Central Huijin Investment Co., an investment company owned by the People's Bank of China as shareholder for the "big four" state-owned banks, said Zhou.


According to Zhou, joint-stock reform will also be stepped up on the Agricultural Bank of China, the last of China's "big four" to go public.


(Xinhua News Agency January 4, 2007)

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