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Hong Kong To Extend Commercial Credit Data Sharing

by Mary Swire, Tax-News.com, Hong Kong

26 November 2007


More businesses will be able to enjoy the benefits of credit data sharing as the Commercial Credit Reference Agency will be expanded to cover sole proprietorships and partnerships from March 1, 2008, the Hong Kong government has announced.

Monetary Authority Executive Director (Banking Policy), Simon Topping explained last week that the agency's continued development will help to strengthen the banking sector's credit-risk management, which in turn will be conducive to enhancing the financial system's safety and soundness.

The agency was established in November 2004 to address small and medium-sized enterprises' need for greater access to credit, and of lending institutions for reliable credit information about their customers.

The agency has collected more than 75,000 credit records from 56,000 SMEs which operate as limited companies. Over the past three years, the total number of records maintained at the agency has nearly tripled, while the number of SME limited companies covered has more than doubled.

"SME lending has grown remarkably in recent years," observed Peter Sullivan, Chairman of HKAB. "The CCRA has played a vital role in facilitating lending institutions' assessment of customers, and in enabling customers with a strong credit history to have faster access to credit at more competitive terms. More businesses will be able to enjoy the benefits of credit data sharing as they are included in the CCRA from 1 March 2008."

"SMEs have always played a vital role in the economic growth of Hong Kong", added Geoffrey Mansfield, Chairman of DTCA, concluding: "The expansion of the CCRA to include those businesses operating as sole proprietorships and partnerships is a very positive development in facilitating access to credit for those additional enterprises."


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