A new report from the Chinese central bank points to ongoing expansion in the availability of financial and payments services for consumers throughout China, including those in rural countryside areas.
On 13 January the People’s Bank of China’s (PBOC) Financial Consumer Rights Protection Department (金融消费权益保护局) released the “2017 China Financial Inclusion Index Analysis Report’ (2017 年中国普惠金融指标分析报告).
According to the report China has almost achieved full coverage of basic financial services at the administrative village level, with the widespread use of bank settlement accounts and bank cards, as well as rapid growth in electronic payments.
As of the end of 2017 China was host to 6.6 bank accounts per capita, as well 4.81 bank cards and 0.39 credit cards per capita, for a modest increase compared to the end of the preceding year.
As of the end of 2017 rural villages were host to 3.966 billion personal bank settlement accounts, or 4.08 per person, for a YoY increase of 11.37%, or 405 million accounts.
The number of bank cards in rural villages was 2.881 billion, for 2.97 cards per capita.
The Report indicates that in 2017 around 66.51% of adults in rural village areas made use of electronic payments, while the figure for all Chinese adults was 76.9%.
Non-cash payments have seen steady growth, with comparatively rapid growth in mobile payments.
In 2017 China processed 160.878 billion non-cash payments worth 3759.94 trillion yuan, for increases of 28.59% and 1.97% respectively.
The study also indicates that in 2017 45.97% of Chinese adults had purchased wealth management products (WMP), while the figure for rural village areas was 32.79%.
In Beijing, where average incomes are higher and the WMP market is more active, 66.4% of adults had invested in WMP’s.