BNP Paribas has obtained greenlight from China’s banking regulator to set up a wealth management joint venture (JV) in the country, reported Bloomberg.

The French bank now joins the list of global firms such as BlackRock and Amundi that are wrestling to make their ways into China’s CNY29tn ($4tn) wealth management market.

BNP Paribas’ asset management unit will partner with Agricultural Bank of China (AgBank) to create the JV, stated the publication citing a person familiar with the matter.

BNP Paribas Asset Management will own a 51% stake in the JV, added the unnamed person.

In an emailed statement to Bloomberg, the company confirmed that it has applied for a license to establish the JV with AgBank.

However, the firm refused to reveal further details.

Banks across the world have been competing to enter China’s wealth management industry through alliances with the country’s largest lenders, which have extensive distribution channel.

Amundi’s JV with Bank of China had managed around $11.6bn assets until 30 June 2022. It became the first global company to launch such an entity in 2020.

In 2018, China commenced overhauling of its wealth management sector. The revamp included suspension of guaranteed returns and other loopholes to reduce risks.

Even after having huge potential, global companies find it difficult to enter China’s wealth management market.

Previously, retail investors in China, who provides guarantee on returns on assets, took a shot at Amundi for unable to meet targets. In June this year, Reuters reported that BNP Paribas had closed its wealth management business in Brazil after transferring the business to its regional rival Banco Bradesco.