Lawmakers yesterday expressed concern about the recent string of foreign financial institutions announcing plans to take over local banks, saying that it was tantamount to a modern version of the invasion mounted by "allied forces of the eight powers."
Standard Chartered Bank has acquired more than 51 percent of the shares of Hsinchu International Bank (新竹國際商銀), while Citibank is rumored to be in buyout talks with Bank of Overseas Chinese (華僑銀行) and HSBC is reportedly interested in the Far Eastern International Bank (遠東商銀).
During the legislature's Finance Committee yesterday morning, Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Gao Jyh-peng (
Minister of Finance Ho Chih-chin (
Shih Jun-ji (
"The fact that foreign players are willing to invest in Taiwanese banks demonstrates their confidence in Taiwan's financial development. They're welcome here," Shih said.
Lin Wen-lang (林文郎) echoed Gao's comments, saying that foreign capital accounts for more than 30 percent of large-scale financial holding companies.
Chinatrust Financial Holding Co (
Lin urged the government to keep a close eye on any future developments.