Thu, Aug 01, 2013 - Page 14 News List

Taishin Financial puts bank merger proposal on hold

By Amy Su  /  Staff reporter

Taishin Financial Holding Co (台新金控) has put the merger of the two commercial banks it controls on hold following the recent change at the top of the nation’s financial regulator.

The company said in a statement yesterday that it would not raise any motion at an upcoming Chang Hwa Commercial Bank (彰化銀行) board meeting about the proposed merger with Taishin International Bank (台新銀行).

The board meeting is scheduled to take place tomorrow.

The move indicates that Taishin Financial is postponing the merger proposal, which may help reduce tensions between Taishin Financial and the Ministry of Finance — the two major stakeholders in Chang Hwa.

“We hope the government will carefully evaluate the merger proposal while it aims to boost the global competitiveness of Taiwan’s financial sector,” Taishin Financial said in a statement, while calling on the government to focus more on integration in the financial sector.

The statement came after Premier Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺) announced on Monday that Vice Minister of Finance William Tseng (曾銘宗) would replace Chen Yuh-chang (陳裕璋) at the helm of the Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC). Tseng will formally take up his new post today.

In June, Chang Hwa Bank’s executive directors — mainly employees of Taishin Financial — approved a plan to start evaluating a merger of Chang Hwa and Taishin International.

“I respect and appreciate its [Taishin Financial’s] decision,” Tseng told reporters in a telephone interview.

Tseng said he hopes Taishin Financial would improve and strengthen its management.

Meanwhile, Tseng said he would be proactive rather than passive and reactive in terms of policy deregulation and formulating policies once he assumes his role at the FSC.

“I hope to help the financial sector in Taiwan raise its profile in the Asia-Pacific region over the next few years,” Tseng said, adding that state-owned banks would play an important role.

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