PBOC’s Official News Outlet Calls for Digitisation of Small Business Finance

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The official news outlet of the Chinese central bank has published an opinion piece calling for the use of digital transformation to expedite the provision of financial services to small businesses.

In an article entitled “Digitisation of Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprise Financial Services Has Great Promise” (中小微企业融资服务数字化大有可为) published by the People’s Bank of China’s (PBOC) Financial News, Chen Chiwen (陈驰文) points out that fintech has played a critical role in expediting financial accessibility during the challenging conditions created by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Since the outbreak of the Novel Coronavirus pandemic, the operations of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSME’s) have come under markedly increased pressure, and traditional financial services have been unable to come into play,” writes Chen.

“It has been necessary to make recourse to fintech, and enable the dividends of technology to reach MSME’s.”

Chen pointed in particular to the launch of the Dalian Enterprise Financial Services Platform (大连市企业金融服务平台) in the north-eastern city of Dalian, which consists of a “Database + Internet” information-gathering public benefit platform.

“The integration of independent databases, the Internet and regional networks enabled the prompt and smooth connection of information on enterprise finance demand with information on financial services and products, creating a bridge connecting supply and demand information between banks and enterprises.”

According to Chen there are still a slew of problems that impede the digitisation of MSME financial services, including lack of core data on enterprise operations and low information usage rates.

Chen forecasts the following trends for the digitisation of small business financial services in China in the near-future, including.

  1. Usage of the payments data from enterprise operations.
  2. Increasing the efficiency of the usage of bank-enterprise information.
  3. Stressing the importance of the Internet-transformation of industry clusters.

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