BNP Paribas has received the nod from China’s banking regulator to set up a wealth management joint venture, adding competition to a market whose total value is estimated at around Rmb29trn ($4trn).
“BNP Paribas Asset Management confirms that it has filed for a licence to establish a wealth management joint venture with the Agricultural Bank of China through the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC). As these are early days in the project, we do not wish to comment any further for now,” a spokesperson for the bank said in an emailed response to FSA.
According to a source, BNP Paribas Asset Management will own a 51% stake in the joint venture, while ABC Wealth Management will hold the remaining 49% stake.
BNP Paribas already has a mutual fund joint venture with Haitong Securities. It also holds a minority stake in Bank of Nanjing.
The French bank is only the latest firm to receive approval from the CBIRC to set up a wealth management joint venture after Beijing liberalised the rules in 2019.
In 2020, Amundi and Bank of China became the first to gain approval to set up a wealth management joint venture, while other foreign firms including Schroders and Goldman Sachs have since received the green light to do the same.
Other foreign firms, including Barclays and Allianz, are also trying to find local partners to set up wealth management joint ventures, according to media reports.