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ICBC To Raise Loans On Demand For Funds

THE Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Ltd, the world's largest lender by market value, will lift loans by 12 to 13 percent this year as the government's stimulus plan spurs demand for funds, said Chairman Jiang Jianqing.

"Demand for loans will probably rise in the second half of the year as the effects of the government's economic stimulus package kicks in," Jiang said yesterday at the annual meeting of the Chinese legislature in Beijing. The Beijing-based bank's new loans exceeded 100 billion yuan (US$14.6 billion) in February, he said.

China dropped lending quotas and unveiled a 4-trillion-yuan package in November to maintain economic growth in the face of falling exports. Domestic lenders have responded by offering a record 1.62 trillion yuan of new advances in January, Bloomberg News said.

ICBC lent 252.1 billion yuan of new loans in January, including 69.3 billion yuan to power grid, railway, roads and power projects.


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