Central bank urges non-cash payment
Updated: 2006-01-24 09:00
The central bank is pushing for wider use of non-cash instruments for
payments this year to meet the needs of the mainland’s developing economy, the
Financial News said yesterday.
“In the first half of 2006, we must set up a national system for making small
(non-cash) payments,” according to the newspaper, which quoted Su Ning, the vice
head of the People’s Bank of China.
While the central bank did not provide many details of the plan, it included
the establishment of national and regional centers to handle the settlement of
checks, bank drafts and other non-cash instruments for commercial and personal
In China, cash is still king and a scarcity of credit cards and other forms
of electronic payment have limited growth in consumer spending, a key element
for economic planners this year as the mainland shifts away from export-driven
About 4 for every 1,000 people on the mainland own an international credit
card, according to Visa. By comparison, Hong Kong and Taiwan both have about one
credit card per person.
Earlier this month, the government said it had formally launched a nationwide
database to help banks better assess the creditworthiness of loan applicants.
Eager to promote a modern credit culture, the government has been pushing for
a unified credit database to help domestic banks evaluate risk as foreign