China’s Banking Regulator Highlights Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Risk as Part of Campaign against Illegal Financing

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The China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC) has reiterated its commitment to the prevention of illegal forms of fundraising in the Chinese financial system, flagging an especial focus on stymieing risk in relation to blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies.

CBIRC said that China still “confronts severe conditions when it comes to illegal fundraising” at the 2021 Interdepartmental Joint Meeting on the Disposal of Illegal Fundraising (2021年处置非法集资部际联席会议) held via teleconference on 22 April.

The authority said it would step up efforts to prevent and deal with illegal financing activities in China, as well as accelerate efforts to dispose of outstanding financing levels and firmly contain further growth. Key work areas will include:

  1. Thorough implementation of the “Regulations for the Prevention and Disposal of Illegal Fundraising” (防范和处置非法集资条例) and the prompt improvement of accompanying systems, as well as effective implementation of enforcement responsibilities.
  2. Active dissolution of risk in key areas – high levels of alert in relation to areas which involve abnormal risk trends such as privately offered funds, wealth management and real estate, and a close focus on emerging areas of risk such as the blockchain, virtual currencies as well as debt resolution services. Keeping a close eye on aged care services, rural institutions, private schools and online education, and striking against illegal forms of fundraising that harm the interests of disadvantaged groups as soon as they appear. Strictly banning the undertaking of commercial profit-seeking and illegal fundraising activities in the name of the 100th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party.
  3. Lawful and appropriate disposal of major cases, continuing to maintain a high level of pressure, resolutely striking against illegal fund-raising crimes and engaging in targeted bomb disposal.
  4. Striving to weave together a monitoring and early warning network which “covers the heavens and the earth.” Firmly driving the development of plans, and accelerating efforts to achieve comprehensive interlinkage of local and national platforms.
  5. Targeted and effective deepening of awareness and education campaigns. Strengthening coordination of online and offline media campaigns, and undertaking differentiated and targeted media campaigns.

CBIRC highlighted the success of its ongoing campaign to prevent and dissolve major forms of financial risk over the past three years, which has included the investigation and processing of over 7,500 illegal fundraising cases, involving a total sum of more than 380 billion yuan (approx. USD$59 billion).

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