China Said to Delay Rules Restricting Banks’ Foreign Technology

Chinese regulators suspended the implementation of guidelines that would limit banks’ use of foreign technology, a person familiar with the matter said.

Banks received a notice this week from the banking regulator saying that the rules need to be revised, the person said, asking not to be identified as he isn’t authorized to speak publicly. The guidelines, which had been due to take effect this month, are delayed, not scrapped, the person said.

China has a broad national strategy, reported by Bloomberg News in December, to purge most foreign technology for banks, state-owned enterprises and the military by 2020. Trade groups from the U.S., Europe and Japan this week urged China to suspend the bank technology rules, saying the policies discriminate against outsiders and limit Chinese companies’ security options.

A U.S. Treasury official said last month that Chinese officials had indicated that they would delay implementing the rules. A press officer at the China Banking Regulatory Commission declined to comment on Friday.

In September, the banking regulator asked lenders to use “safe and controllable” information technology starting in 2015, which should account for about 75 percent of the total by

2019. The regulator in January required banks to consider ways to use more domestic products or foreign brands that comply with government requirements.

— With assistance by Jun Luo

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