China and Bank for International Settlement (BIS)
2004/05/17

The Bank for International Settlement was established and opened for business in 1930. It is owned and controlled by central banks of its member countries and provides highly specialized services to them, and through them, to the international financial system. It is a financial institution that conducts central bank business. The main task of the BIS is to "promote the cooperation of the central banks and to provide additional facilities for international financial operation". Expanding cooperation among central banks has always been an important factor in maintaining international financial stability, and this has become ever more important in light of the integration of international financial markets.

The BIS has 44 members, most of whom are industrialized countries and some Eastern European countries. The authorized share capital of BIS is 1.5 billion gold francs, divided into 600,000 shares of equal nominal value (2,500 gold francs per share).

The People's Bank of China established business relations with BIS in 1984, and participated in several of its Annual Meetings as observer. Vice Premier Zhu Rongji paid a visit to BIS in January 1995, and Mr. Andrew Crockett, General Manager of the Bank, visited China in September 1995. In November 1996, the People's Bank of China became a member of BIS. China's accession opened a new channel for cooperation between the People's Bank of China and other central banks. The Hong Kong Monetary Authority also became member of BIS together with the People's Bank of China. According to the Basic Law of the Hong Kong Special Administration Region of the People's Republic of China, the status of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority in BIS remains unchanged after Hong Kong returns to China and it retains its own share and enjoys independent right to vote.

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