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The Chinese banking regulator has stepped up efforts to maintain availability of financial services as the country is still grappling to contain the deadly coronavirus outbreak.

The China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC) has issued a notice to all banking and insurance institutions to strengthen their services. China Banking News reported the move citing a regulatory statement.

The notice also urged the institutions to undertake possible steps and support the local government to restrict coronavirus from spreading.

CBIRC directed the banks to conduct staff health check-ups as well as sanitise ATMs and counters regularly.

The instructions also include bolstering hygiene and disease prevention management at all office sites.

The financial institutions are required to rationally arrange their operations to ensure provision of services. In case services are impacted due to the outbreak, explanations must be effectively made with replacement solution plans provided.

Furthermore, people, who lost income sources due to coronavirus epidemic, will receive preferences in lending arrangements, credit cards and more.

Coronavirus outbreak: China Q1 GDP growth may falter

China is bracing for an economic blow as coronavirus outbreak continues to spread in the country. The outbreak may trim first-quarter GDP growth by nearly 1 percentage point.

Local magazine Caijing quoted government economist Zhang Ming as saying that the GDP growth in the first quarter will be around 5% or below.

The outbreak has already impacted several domestic sectors including travel, consumption and manufacturing.

Coronavirus updates  

Earlier this week, several banking groups asked their bank workers in Hong Kong to work from home if they have recently travelled from China.

Several experts also opined that the virus will impact investment.

Follow the latest updates of the outbreak on our timeline.