Industrial Commercial Bank of China chairman Jianqing Jiang was in Toronto on Tuesday to discuss his bank's expansion plans for Canada and met with The Globe and Mail to discuss his views on the global banking sector.
ICBC, the world's largest bank by market value, is establishing a foothold in Canada through its purchase of six branches owned by the Bank of East Asia. It wants to court the growing number of Chinese citizens and companies doing business outside China.
On China's yuan:
"Recently China announced its policy change from pegging only to the U.S. dollar to pegging to a basket of currencies. Countries around the world are very supportive of China changing its currency policy. I think the currency reform in China is still going on. ... This will be a controlled process and it will be gradual, instead of happening overnight."
On global bank regulatory reforms:
"A very important aspect of this reform is capital requirements. Reform around capital requirements involves two aspects: one is to raise the amount of capital, the other is to enhance the quality. Both are very important for financial institutions. Tier-one, equity-based capital shall be the highest priority."
On expansion of ICBC's branches in Canada:
"We are still studying all the possibilities in the local market. So far we don't have a very specific plan to grow our network significantly over the next couple of years."