Asia and Pacific > Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, People's Republic of China

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International Monetary Fund. Legal Dept.
This report provides a summary of the anti-money laundering/combating the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) measures in place in the People’s Republic of China (China)1 as at the date of the onsite visit (July 9–27, 2018). It analyzes the level of compliance with the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) 40 Recommendations and the level of effectiveness of China’s AML/CFT system and provides recommendations on how the system could be strengthened. China has undertaken a number of initiatives since 2002 that have contributed positively to its understanding of ML/TF risk, although some important gaps remain. Its framework for domestic AML/CFT cooperation and coordination is well established.
International Monetary Fund. African Dept.
This 2019 Article IV Consultation discusses that Mauritius is pursuing an ambitious strategy to foster inclusive growth and reach the high-income country milestone. Several structural challenges, notably, a shortage of suitably skilled workers, an aging population, and declining productivity and cost competitiveness confront Mauritius in meeting these goals. The discussions focused on preserving fiscal sustainability, regaining external competitiveness, and maintaining financial integrity and stability. Several steps have been undertaken to boost skill development, improve the business climate, and build innovation capacity. On the expenditure side, economic activity is expected to be spurred in the near term by public spending on infrastructure projects and sustained in the medium term as those projects and productivity-enhancing reforms improve private-sector competitiveness. It is recommended to pursue fiscal consolidation from the forthcoming budget FY2019/20 to build fiscal credibility and set public debt firmly on a declining path into the medium term.
International Monetary Fund
The standards and codes (S&C) initiative was launched in the aftermath of the emerging market crises of the 1990s as part of efforts to strengthen the international financial architecture, with a focus on emerging markets. The initiative has aimed at promoting international standards and codes to improve economic and financial resilience by assisting countries in strengthening their economic institutions and informing World Bank and IMF work. The four previous reviews confirmed a fairly high appreciation of the overall initiative, while also raising questions about the initiative’s link to surveillance and capacity development efforts, weak uptake by market participants, as well as a need to improve traction with policy makers. This review reaffirms the country authorities’ appreciation for S&C work, and its focus and scope are guided by the February 2017 paper.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This 2016 Article IV Consultation highlights China’s continued transition to sustainable growth, with progress on many fronts. Growth slowed to 6.9 percent in 2015 and is projected to moderate to 6.6 percent in 2016 owing to slower private investment and weak external demand. The economy is advancing on many dimensions of rebalancing, particularly switching from industry to services and from investment to consumption. But other aspects are lagging, such as strengthening state-owned enterprises and financial governance and containing rapid credit growth. The current account surplus is projected to decline to 2.5 percent of GDP in 2016 as imports increase and the services deficit widens with continued outbound tourism.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This 2015 Article IV Consultation highlights that China is transitioning to a new normal, with slower-yet-safer, more sustainable growth. Growth in 2014 fell to 7.4 percent and, in 2015, is forecast to slow further to 6.8 percent on the back of slower investment, especially in real estate. The labor market has remained resilient despite slower growth, as the economy pivots toward the more labor-intensive service sector. Considerable progress has been made in external rebalancing. The current account surplus fell to 2.1 percent in 2014 from the peak of about 10 percent in 2007, and the renminbi has appreciated by about 10 percent since 2014 in real effective terms. Further progress has also been made on domestic rebalancing.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
KEY ISSUES Context. After three decades of remarkable growth, the economy has been slowing. Much of the slowdown has been structural, reflecting the natural convergence process and waning dividends from past reforms; weak global growth has also contributed. Moreover, since the global financial crisis, growth has relied too much on investment and credit, which is not sustainable and has created rising vulnerabilities. Growth was 7.7 percent in 2013, and is expected to slow to around 7½ percent this year and decline further over the medium term. Focus. The pattern of growth since the global financial crisis is not sustainable and has resulted in rising vulnerabilities. The discussions focused on assessing the risks posed by the continued build-up of vulnerabilities; reforms to unleash new, sustainable engines of growth and reduce vulnerabilities; and how to best manage aggregate demand in this context, as growth is slowing yet risks are still rising. A key takeaway is that to secure a safer development path, accommodative policies need to be carefully unwound, accompanied by decisive implementation of the announced reform agenda to promote rebalancing. The result will be somewhat slower but safer growth in the near term, with the significant long-run benefit of securing more inclusive, environment-friendly, and sustainable growth. Risks. Credit and ‘shadow banking,’ local government finances, and the corporate sector— particularly real estate—are the key, and interlinked, areas of rising vulnerability. In the near term, the risk of a hard landing is still considered low as the government has the capacity to combat potential shocks. However, without a change in the pattern of growth, the hard-landing risk continues to rise and is assessed to be medium-likely over the medium term. Reform agenda. The authorities have announced a comprehensive and ambitious blueprint of reforms. Successful implementation should achieve the desired transformation of the economy, but will also be challenging. Demand management. Reining in credit growth, local government borrowing, and investment will address the risks, but also slow growth. Macro support should be calibrated to allow needed adjustments to take place, while preventing growth from slowing too much. Scenarios and spillovers. With faster adjustment and reform implementation, growth will be somewhat lower in the near term, with moderate spillovers for trading partners. However, in the medium term, income and consumption will both be higher—a result that is good for China and good for the global economy.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This Insurance Core Principles Detailed Assessment Report was prepared in the context of the Financial Sector Assessment Program for the People’s Republic of China–Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR). The report describes that the insurance penetration and density in HKSAR is among the top 10 in the world. Foreign-owned insurers are dominant in the HKSAR insurance sector, and account for about 72 percent of total assets as at end-2012. The long-term insurance industry is highly concentrated, while the market share of general insurance industry is more evenly distributed. All except one of the top-10 insurance groups are all foreign owned, with much larger consolidated operations compared to their operations in HKSAR. The Insurance Authority is responsible for regulating and supervising the insurance industry of the HKSAR. It is supported by the Office of the Commissioner of Insurance, a government department in the HKSAR. A self-regulatory system is used to supervise the conduct of business of intermediaries.
Mr. Tanai Khiaonarong
This paper examines oversight issues that underlie the potential growth and risks in mobile payments. International experience suggests that financial authorities can develop effective oversight frameworks for new payment methods to safeguard public confidence and financial stability by establishing: (i) a clear legal regime; (ii) proportionate AML/CFT measures to prevent financial integrity risks; (iii) fund safeguarding measures such as insurance, similar guarantee schemes, or “pass through” deposit insurance; (iv) contingency plans for operational disruptions; and (v) risk controls and access criteria in payment systems. Such measures are particularly important for low-income countries where diffusion is becoming more widespread.
International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
This staff report on People’s Republic of China 2013 Article IV Consultation highlights macroeconomic developments and outlook. China has maintained robust growth since the global crisis, but the heavy reliance on credit and investment to sustain activity is raising vulnerabilities. The consequence is a steady build-up of leverage that is eroding the strength of the financial sector, local government, and corporate balance sheets. This is most apparent in the continued rapid expansion in total social financing. The development of nontraditional finance marks a shift to more market-based intermediation, and the migration of activity to less-regulated parts of the system poses risks to financial stability.