The material on this site is for financial institutions, professional investors and their professional advisers. It is for information only. Please read our Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy and Cookies before using this site.

All material subject to strictly enforced copyright laws. © 2020 Euromoney, a part of the Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC.
Fintech

Taiwan pushes hard – and late – into digital banking

Despite being a global leader in IT and semiconductors, Taiwan has long been a digital laggard. The regulator has just issued the island’s first digital banking licences, but is it a simple case of ‘too late’ rather than ‘better late than never’?

Taiwan-night-market-780.jpg

Taiwanese citizens are said to live in a world of extreme convenience. Shops in most major cities are open 24 hours a day, 52 weeks a year

After years of prevarication, Taiwan is finally entering the age of digital banking. On July 30, the island’s financial authorities handed its first batch of virtual banking licences to three consortia.

The first, led by local carrier Chunghwa Telecom, will be called Next Commercial Bank. The second, Line Financial Taiwan, is backed by the Japanese app developer Line Group, Standard Chartered and a trio of domestic lenders that includes CTBC Bank and Taipei Fubon Commercial Bank.

Regulators awarded the third licence to a consortium comprising Taiwan’s IBF Financial Holdings and Japan’s Rakuten International Commercial Bank, which is currently applying to open a bank in the US.

The move by the Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) heartened and irritated in equal measure. Detractors said Taiwan already had too many lenders. It’s hard to disagree with that view: this is a rich, developed island of 24 million people that boasts 36 commercial lenders, many overstaffed and offering highly homogenized services.

Proponents say the FSC’s decision is seriously overdue.


You have reached premium content. Please log in to continue reading.

Read beyond the headlines with Euromoney

For over 50 years, our readers have looked to Euromoney to stay informed about the issues that matter in the international banking and financial markets. Find out more about our different levels of access below.

SUBSCRIBE ONLINE TODAY

Unlimited access to Euromoney.com and Asiamoney.com

Expert comment, long reads and in-depth analysis interviews with senior finance professionals

Access the results of our market-leading annual surveys across core financial services

Access the results of our annual awards, including the world-renowned Awards for Excellence

Your print copy of Euromoney magazine delivered monthly

£73.75 per month

Billed Annually

FREE 7 DAY TRIAL

Unlimited access to Euromoney.com and Asiamoney.com, including our top stories, long reads, expert analysis, and the results of our annual surveys and awards

Sign up to any of our newsletters, curated by our editors

LOGIN NOW

Already a user?

We use cookies to provide a personalized site experience.
By continuing to use & browse the site you agree to our Privacy Policy.
I agree