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Credit investigation regulations to take effect soon

By Shi Jing | | Updated: 2013-01-31 17:20

After 10 years of preparation work, the Regulations on the Administration of Credit Investigation were officially announced on Jan 30 and will be in effect from March 15.

"The implementation of the new policy will help to regulate the behaviors of credit investigation institutions, information providers and users. It will also protect the rights of the people concerned," said Wang Yu, director of the Credit Information System Bureau of the People’s Bank of China, the country’s central bank.

Wang said that a bad credit record will be kept for five years but that it should be deleted once it’s due.

A bad credit record is kept for six years in the United Kingdom and for five years in the Republic of Korea. In Hong Kong, individual bankruptcy information is kept for eight years.

In the United States, individual bankruptcy information is kept for 10 years and other negative records for seven years. A bad credit record involving an amount over $150,000 is not within any regulated time frame.

At present, individual credit reports in China can be searched from a database built by the central bank and maintained by the Credit Reference Center. The database, which has been in operation for eight years, includes information of over 18 million companies and 800 million individuals.

The credit investigation industry is vital for the market economy. Individual fingerprints, blood type, religious information and medical history are not allowed to be released.

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