China mulls measures to mitigate corporate bond default risks

BEIJING, Nov. 18 (Xinhua) — China will tighten supervision and strengthen cross-department coordination to mitigate risks of corporate bond defaults, the country’s top economic planner said.

Local governments will be required to carry out stricter supervision over corporate bonds through measures such as project screening and inspection, said Meng Wei, spokesperson for the National Development and Reform Commission, at a press conference Tuesday.

Efforts will be made to establish a cross-department coordination mechanism, improve information disclosure and further unify disclosure rules of the bond market, Meng said.

A prevention and control system will also be put in place to help identify, discover and handle cases as early as possible, while plans to reduce market risks shall be formulated, the spokesperson said.

Amid efforts to better leverage corporate bonds to support the real economy, China began implementing a registration-based system for the public issuance of corporate bonds starting from March, and unveiled regulations on processing and approving bond issuance applications.

Despite new challenges at home and abroad, the country has reported zero cases of corporate credit bond defaults so far this year, with its cumulative default rate hitting the lowest level, Meng noted.

Official data showed that the issuance of corporate bonds in the country reached 476.78 billion yuan (about 72.69 billion U.S. dollars) as of Nov. 10, a positive growth compared with the same period last year.

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