New Government Document on Managing RMB Bank Accounts for Overseas NGOs

A document issued by the People’s Bank of China (PBC) and the Ministry of Public Security (MPS)

 

PBC document number 90 (2017)

Notice from the PBC and the MPS concerning the proper performance of work relating to the management of the RMB accounts of overseas non-governmental organization (NGO) representative organizations.

To the Shanghai head office, all branches, business management departments, central sub-branches based in the capital cities of provinces and autonomous regions, and the Shenzhen central sub-branch of the PBC; the public security bureaus (departments) of all provinces, autonomous regions, and provincial level cities; the China Development Bank, all non-commercial banks, state-owned commercial banks, share-issuing commercial banks, and postal-savings deposit banks:

The ‘Law of the People’s Republic of China on the Administration of Activities of Overseas Non-Governmental Organizations within the Territory of China’ came into effect on January 1st, 2017. In order to ensure that overseas NGO representative organizations conduct their RMB bank account related affairs lawfully, its relevant items are hereby communicated as follows.

 

The identification documents to be supplied in order to conduct RMB bank account related affairs

Upon arriving at a bank or financial institution (henceforth referred to as ‘bank’) with the intention of conducting affairs relating to an RMB bank account, overseas NGO representative organizations must provide a “overseas NGO representative organization registration certificate” issued by a public security organ and containing a Unified Social Credit Code (see attachment 1), as well as a tax affairs registration certificate issued by a tax administration department. The responsible person of the overseas NGO representative organization must provide valid identity documentation, as well as supplementary identity documentation verifying their status as the staff member of a overseas NGO representative organization, such as a ‘chief representative of a overseas NGO representative organization certificate’ or ‘representative of a overseas NGO representative organization certificate’ (see attachments 2 and 3).

When opening a bank account for a overseas NGO representative organization, in the RMB bank settlement accounts administration system, ‘other organization’ is to be chosen when specifying the nature of the depositor, the 18-digit Unified Social Credit Code is to be entered into the ‘identification document number 1’ field, and other information is to be entered into the corresponding fields.

 

The modification and management of RMB bank account information

(1) overseas NGO representative organizations that opened RMB bank accounts prior to obtaining a ‘overseas NGO representative organization certificate’ must submit an application to a public security organ to obtain such a certificate prior to December 31st 2017, and promptly go to the relevant bank to have their RMB bank account information updated. When having their RMB bank account information updated, those overseas NGO representative organizations that have undergone a change in name must in addition present a document verifying that the change in name was approved by a public security organ.

(2) When updating information on behalf of overseas NGO representative organizations that opened RMB bank accounts prior to obtaining a ‘overseas NGO representative organization registration certificate’, in the RMB bank settlement accounts administration system, ‘category of depositor’ is to remain unchanged, the 18-digit Unified Social Credit Code is to be entered into fields for licenses such as ‘industrial or commercial business license’, and other information is to be entered into the corresponding fields. At the same time, the Shanghai head office, all branches, business management departments, central sub-branches based in the capital cities of provinces and autonomous regions, and the Shenzhen central sub-branch of the PBC (henceforth referred to as ‘PBC provincial-level organs’) are to summarize the situation within their jurisdictions, complete ‘batch modification of overseas NGO representative organization depositor category application forms’ (see attachment 4), and submit them in batches by June 30th and December 31st 2017 to the PBC Payment System Department, which will undertake in a unified manner the task of modifying the information in the ‘depositor category’ field. Once the PBC Payment System Department has completed this task, PBC provincial-level organs should promptly complete the task of checking the updated information.

(3) Since January 1st  2018, for the overseas NGOs and their representative organizations that have opened RMB bank accounts but have not obtained an “Overseas NGO Representative Organization Registration Certificate”, after the identification of official documents from provincial public security organs, banks should only process money received but not paid out. After they have obtained an “Overseas NGO Representative Organization Registration Certificate” and updated their RMB bank account information, their bank accounts will be restored for normal use.

(4) When banks find changes in the licenses of overseas NGO representative organizations through daily business, annual inspection etc, the banks should promptly notify the overseas NGO representative organizations to update their information as soon as possible.

 

Requirements for Management

(1) Banks should actively inform clients of the impact that changes in the licensing rules for representatives of foreign nongovernmental organizations will have on the audit of that client’s registration of basic identifying information, as well as on client’s records of opening an account. The bank should take actions such as performing inspections at the teller counter and logging in and submitting queries to the public security office’s online service platform for foreign nongovernmental organizations in order to obtain and review information on the client regarding the authenticity, completeness, and compliance of their basic identifying information and of documents such as the “Representative of Foreign Nongovernmental Organization Registration Certificate”. The bank should modify the organization’s RMB bank account information in a timely manner. If the bank discovers or has reasonable grounds to suspect money laundering, terrorist financing, or any other criminal activities, a suspicious transaction report should be submitted.

(2) Branch offices of The People’s Bank of China should guide those banks under their area of jurisdiction to standardize the handling of RMB bank account services for representatives of foreign nongovernmental organizations according to “The People’s Republic of China Law on Managing Domestic Activities of Foreign Nongovernmental Organizations,” “The People’s Republic of China Anti-Money Laundering Law,” “Measures for the Administration of RMB Bank Settlement Accounts” (issued by The People’s Bank of China 2003 No. 5), “Measures for Managing Customer Identification, Managing Customer Identity Data, and Preserving Transaction Records for Financial Institutions” (issued by The People’s Bank of China 2007 No. 2) as well as other related laws and regulations.

(3) Public security offices at all levels should strengthen communication and cooperation with all branches of RMB banks in order to notify of pertinent situations in a timely manner. These offices should cooperate with branches of The People’s Bank of China to do well in providing services to representatives of foreign nongovernmental organizations, and to solve any related questions or problems that may arise.

To the provincial branches of The People’s Bank of China; please distribute this notice to the public security bureau offices of each province, autonomous region, and self-governing municipality, including the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps public security bureau, and have these offices forward this notice on to relevant institutions within their jurisdiction.

 

Attached:

  1. Foreign Nongovernmental Organization Representative Registration Certificate
  2. Foreign Nongovernmental Organization Representative Chief Representative Certificate
  3. Foreign Nongovernmental Organization Representative Representation Certificate
  4. Foreign Nongovernmental Organization Representative Depositor Batch Change Application Form

 

For the original Chinese version of this regulation, please see here

Translated by Mark Czeller and Samantha Moritz

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