(ATF) China's manufacturing sector saw a surge in new loans in the first five months of this year as the country strengthened financial support amid the coronavirus epidemic, official data showed Sunday.
From January to May, a total of 1.4 trillion yuan ($197 billion) of new loans has flowed to Chinese manufacturers, up 10% year on year, which is the highest growth since 2014, according to the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC).
The commission has asked banking and insurance institutions to deepen efforts to facilitate the upgrade of the manufacturing sector and help stabilise industrial and supply chains amid the epidemic, said Ye Yanfei, an official with the CBIRC.
In the year through May, news loans to the manufacturing sector accounted for 11. % of the total new loans, 6.7 percentage points higher than the level at the beginning of the year.
By the end of the first quarter, the non-performing loan (NPL) ratio for the manufacturing sector stood at 4.5%, unchanged from the beginning of the year.
Ye said arrangements aimed at helping small businesses to pull through the epidemic, such as deferring loan repayments, had paid off.
By the end of May, outstanding inclusive loans to small and micro businesses issued by the banking sector amounted to 13.1tn yuan, up 27.6% year on year.