On 15 October 2019 the State Council in China published the Decision on Revising the 'Foreign Insurers in China Regulations' and the 'Foreign-Invested Banks Administrative Regulations' ("Decision"). The Decision relaxes certain restrictions on foreign investment in the insurance and banking sectors, putting into law previously announced policies.
The announcement of the Decision came just as the U.S. and China had concluded the latest round of trade talks with a declaration that "substantial progress" had been made. Reportedly the Decision has been seen in the U.S. as a welcome move towards further opening up markets and levelling the playing field for foreign investors against the background of the latest trade war truce. Above all, the Decision should be seen as creating an opportunity for foreign investors to get into, or expand their presence in these key sectors, and while the link between the liberalization and the trade talks is not clear at present, sends a clear message that regardless of whatever the outcome in the trade talks, China remains "open for business".
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