China will not participate in Western financial sanctions against Russia: the head of the banking regulator

Guo Shuqing, head of the China Banking and Insurance Supervisory Authority, said on Wednesday that China is opposed to unilateral financial sanctions and will not participate in such sanctions imposed by Western countries on Russia.

In the latest sanctions imposed on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the Western allies decided on Tuesday to cut off several Russian banks from the global financial messaging system Swift.

“We will not engage in such sanctions, and we will continue to maintain normal economic, trade and financial exchanges with relevant parties,” Mr. Guo said in a brief.

In response to a question at the briefing, he said that unilateral financial sanctions usually do not show a good effect and lack legal basis.

Given the close ties between Beijing and Moscow, analysts believe that China could provide an alternative by offering to use its fledgling rival Swift, the so-called interbank cross-border payment system, even though the Chinese network has a very limited reach.

Regarding the impact of such sanctions on the Chinese economy and financial system, he said, “It is not very clear now and should be monitored,” but the impact should be limited given the resilience of the Chinese economy.

– Grace Chu contributed to this article

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