Chinese top bank's Internet financial products boom

Xinhua, August 7, 2015

China's biggest bank, the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), has granted more loans in both yuan and foreign currencies in the first half of the year, thanks to innovative online loan products.

The bank's new loans in both yuan and foreign currencies rose 5.6 percent year on year to 623 billion yuan ($102 billion) in the first six months of 2015.

One of its online loan products that aims to fit the investment needs of small and micro enterprises (SMEs), "Wang-dai-tong", has extended a total of 1.73 trillion yuan of loans to more than 70,000 SMEs, ICBC spokesman Gao Zhixin told a press conference Thursday.

During the first six months, one of its e-commerce platforms "Rong-e-gou" registered around 204 billion yuan of business, 26.8 times more than that in the same period last year, Gao said.

The bank is to establish an Internet financing center to offer more online financial products, said Xiong Yan, general manager of ICBC's financial services for small enterprises department.

Internet finance has helped small enterprises grow, expanded employment, and opened the door for mass entrepreneurship and innovation. In early July, China unveiled its "Internet Plus" plan, which promises to boost the integration of the Internet with traditional sectors like manufacturing, agriculture, finance and logistics.