When I was appointed chairman of the Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) in August 2013, the government was just beginning to promote its recently established free economic pilot zones (FEPZs). The idea was to use deregulation and the creation of innovative new systems to spur increased economic activity and create jobs. Despite a strong improvement in financial strengths of domestic financial institutions, there was still room to make them more competitive, so we came up with a plan to allow financial services firms to benefit from all the deregulatory measures applying within the FEPZs. A drastic reduction in restrictions on the launch of new financial products and services would effectively stimulate development of the financial industry. In September 2013, the FSC launched the "Plan to Include Financial Institutions in the Free Economic Pilot Zone Project," and since then we have completed a series of related legislative actions. In the future, the FSC will continue taking additional measures to achieve further financial liberalization. To ensure that financial institutions are run in a sound manner and promote development of financial markets, the FSC is implementing the following policies:
Legal compliance, risk control, market order: Ensuring that financial institutions obey the law and put proper emphasis on discipline and order are the core principles of financial supervision. The FSC adheres to these principles and takes an open attitude in supporting the development of financial services firms and ensuring proper order in financial markets.
Human resources, channels, Asian presence: Human resources are the foundation of sound development of financial services firms to achieve sound development, and the Asian region is becoming the main engine of global economic growth. For these reasons, the FSC encourages financial services firms to step up efforts to equip their personnel with the skills they need to handle international financial business. Having established a strong position for themselves in Taiwan, these firms can actively build up their presence in the Asian region.
Stability, openness, and innovation: While paying due attention to the need for control of risks, the FSC will continue taking measured steps to further open Taiwan''s financial markets, and will encourage firms to launch innovative new financial products to satisfy diverse customer needs.
Integrity, social responsibility, and concern for the environment: The FSC will encourage financial services firms to show concern for the environment and for future generations, to practice ethical corporate management, to fulfill their corporate social responsibility, and to create an environment where sustainable development is possible.
Win-win for financial services and industry: Access to finance is the lifeline of industrial development. And when industry prospers, the financial sector thrives, so the FSC will continue studying the possible adoption of financial policies and measures that would facilitate the emergence of a more sophisticated financial industry and the development of industry and the larger economy.
Strategy for development of the financial industry: The FSC has established an offshore securities unit (OSU) system and issued 15 OSU business permits, and banks'' offshore banking units (OBUs) are now allowed to conduct any foreign exchange business that does not appear on a negative list. Both of these changes constitute major breakthroughs.
Development of RMB businesses: The FSC since 2013 has allowed banks to handle RMB deposits, loans, and remittances. Our banks have amassed considerable RMB deposits and launched many RMB products, including investment funds, bonds, and insurance policies. Close economic and trade relations across the Taiwan Strait, and the increasing internationalization of the RMB, are generating a lot of business opportunities, so the FSC will continue pursuing a strategy of developing Taiwan as an offshore RMB market.
Support for industrial development: The FSC has adopted a four-pronged action plan for support of creative enterprises with strong development potential, which entails the following four approaches: (a) education and training; (b) special financing projects; (c) an advisory platform; and (d) coordinated measures. At the same time, the FSC worked with the GreTai Securities Market (GTSM) to establish the Gofunding Zone website and the Go Incubation Board for Startup and Acceleration Firms (GISA) to facilitate the development of micro-businesses and creative enterprises, so they can grow and internationalize, which would inject increased vitality into Taiwan''s capital markets.
Sound development of the financial sector is key to a sustainable national economy. To continue liberalizing the financial industry and ensure sound management of financial institutions, the FSC will encourage financial services firms to seize upon opportunities that arise as a result of deregulatory measures. During the course of this effort, the FSC will take care to pay due attention to supervisory concerns, such as legal compliance, self-regulation, and risk management. By ensuring that "the financial services support industry, and industry injects vitality into the financial sector," the FSC seeks to bolster Taiwan''s economy, create jobs, and spur economic development.