With internet finance and e-commerce growing rapidly in China, industry players are urging open platforms that will enable firms to share credit data on users and ensure good pricing practices.
Companies are calling for some initiatives as they find the door on the central bank’s credit reporting system still closed for the internet finance sector.
Yao Naisheng, deputy general manager at Nasdaq-listed JD.com, told an internet finance summit in Hong Kong last Friday that although his firm could build its own credit data system, given the huge amount of transaction data that it already possesses through JD’s e-commerce business, it’s better to have a sharing mechanism for credit reporting data and related pricing system.
Apart from JD.com, some other internet players have also been building their own crediting reporting systems based on their main businesses.
Compared to the mature credit reporting system in the United States, the internet finance industry in China faces big problems in evaluating the credibility of lenders and borrowers on the online platforms.
Baidu has been exploring ways to establish an open credit reporting system which will protect users’ privacy, Zhang Zhenghua, a general manager at the search giant’s payment division, said at the same forum.
Baidu integrates users’ data from its location services, search engine records and e-commerce sites. As for Tencent, data gleaned from its networking services serves as the raw data for credit evaluation.
“But both the transaction data and social behavior data account for only small part of the data available to build complete credit reporting system,” said Xing Haipeng, director of corporate strategy at Tencent. “The largest parts are still held by the government.”
Xing expects “reform and development of existing personal credit reporting system to happen soon.”
According to some estimates, the Chinese market for personal credit evaluation services will reach about 100 billion yuan in about a decade, compares to 200 million yuan at present.
However, observers say a lot of work needs to done with regard to laws, on issues such as defining who the personal data belongs to and how the data should be used.
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