Concerns mount regarding Chinese economy
David Ignatius is one of the more balanced commentators you’ll find, so when he write a piece stressing “warning signs” in China, it’s worth a read.
The government in China is trying to address the staggering amount of corruption, yet this effort seems to be having a destabilizing effect. Also, there are tons of bad loans in China and what appears to be a massive real estate bubble.
All of this spells trouble, and recent real estate sell-offs and bond sale cancellations have observers worried.
The shadow banking problem in China
With all the massive growth in China, there are serious problems below the surface. The basic problem is that the huge national and local governments are corrupt and cronyism rules. This has led to huge real estate loans that make little sense.
Meanwhile, small businesses who legitimately need capital have to resort to a shadow banking system, and that poses a whole new set a problems. The Chinese government is trying to address the issue.
Risks stemming from China’s shadow banking system and private lending must be “strictly controlled,” and such loans will be curbed, the head of the nation’s banking regulator said.
Loans to local government financing vehicles and the real- estate industry, which also pose dangers for the banking system, can be managed, Liu Mingkang, chairman of the China Banking Regulatory Commission, said at a conference.
The government and regulators have already implemented “effective measures” that will ensure the overall risks are “controllable,” Liu said, according to a transcript of his speech posted on the regulator’s website yesterday.
Premier Wen Jiabao last week pledged to support smaller companies after media reports highlighted a credit squeeze that has driven many businesses to the so-called shadow banking system to obtain loans. More than 80 businessmen in the eastern city of Wenzhou have disappeared, committed suicide or declared bankruptcy to avoid repaying debts to informal lenders, the official Xinhua News Agency reported on Oct. 12.
The story in China is much more complicated than you would learn from conventional wisdom and simple headlines.
Posted in: Domestic Politics, Economy
Tags: China real estate bubble, Chinese cronyism, Chinese real estate bubble, Chinese shadow banking, cronyism, cronyism in China, Liu Mingkang, overbuilding in China, real estate, real estate bubble, real estate cronyism, real estate in China, shadow banking, shadow banking in China, shadow banking problem, shadow banking reforms, shadow banking system