China: Xi Jinping wants to better regulate online finance

China: Xi Jinping wants to further regulate online finance

DAY

Chinese President Xi Jinping has called for a better framework for online finance but insisted on Beijing's “support” for the digital economy, after a turn of the screw that has shaken the sector.

The digital and technology giants have been under pressure for a year and a half from the authorities, who have multiplied the blows and fines, in particular for questions of competition and personal data.

Ant Group, the payment and financial services subsidiary of the national e-commerce champion Alibaba, was the first to suffer the punishment of the authorities at the end of 2020, with a gigantic abortive IPO.

The tech tightening has since caused the sector to lose billions of dollars in market capitalization.

On Wednesday, Xi Jinping called for “improved regulation” governing payment and service platforms financial services, reported the New China news agency.

Measures must be taken to “defuse” the risks for the financial system, he stressed during a meeting with the highest Chinese leaders.

The vast majority of day-to-day payments in China are now made via the mobile apps of digital giants, a method that has supplanted bank cards and cash from traditional banks and is therefore partially unregulated. regulators.

Digital companies must however be “supported”, insisted Xi Jinping on Wednesday.

In recent weeks, the markets have been encouraged by several signals from the authorities, perceived as positive for digital giants.

In April, the government had already affirmed its support for the digital economy and received several bosses in the process.

The authorities also granted new video game licenses in early June after a freeze of several months , a relief for an industry heavily penalized by restrictions on underage playing time since 2021.

According to the Wall Street Journal, authorities are also preparing to put a end to the lawsuits against Didi, heavyweight of the VTC in China.

The Chinese Uber has been targeted since last year by an administrative investigation in connection with its collection of personal data, which had forced Didi to announce its precipitous withdrawal from the New York Stock Exchange in December.

Threatened by an economic slowdown, Beijing is also sparing the automotive sector.

Prime Minister Li Keqiang said on Wednesday that he was considering a extension of subsidies for the purchase of clean vehicles, which were initially to p terminate on December 31, 2022.