What we can learn from Chinese banks about the impact of coronavirus

Published March 25, 2020

Social media posts from banks in China reveal a wide-ranging response to supporting customers as the global coronavirus pandemic continues to spread.

Posts include everything from procedures to sanitize cash and supporting customers with delayed payments, to showing how banks were able to leverage their international reach to help the Chinese healthcare system procure much needed medical supplies. (Tip: use a web translator to read the posts in a different language.)

While the impact of the virus and associated public policies vary widely by country, a few clear banking trends have emerged in Chinese banking, according to various sources.



Online banking

While Chinese banks have experimented with creative concepts like a branch run by robots, the clear push has been toward online banking. The acceleration of online banking has resulted in an increase in bandwidth available to handle the growing demand.

Additionally, new services are now available online that may have previously required a branch visit; these include “contactless loans” for millions of Chinese small businesses with competitive interest rates.

Most banks also now offer broader mobile banking capabilities, from payments and wealth management to transfers and deposits. Some are also enabling additional security measures for customers, such as creating daily online spending caps through popular payment services like Alipay and Tenpay.


Loan and payment support

As companies face new economic pressures as a result of the coronavirus, some banks in China are working to keep them afloat until normal business processes can resume.

Chinese banks are now offering individual and small business micro loans—some with same-day approvals. Other banks have published policies limiting late payment fees in addition to offers that postpone payment entirely if the customer can show they’ve experienced a loss of income as a result of the pandemic.


In times of uncertainty, NCR is ready to help

NCR is committed to helping financial institutions of all sizes navigate the many challenges of the COVID-19 outbreak. For more information, contact NCR.

Our banking solutions experts are in the trenches with our customers, working hard to help provide guidance, solutions and recommendations.

You can find us at, have us call you back, call in the U.S. at 1-800-CALL-NCR, or outside of the U.S. at 1-937-445-1936.

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