China revives controversial bank procurement rules - Reuters

China revives controversial bank procurement rules - Reuters

International tech vendors could face difficulty selling to Chinese banks after Reuters reported that the Chinese government is set to revive controversial cyber security rules that limits the amount of technology that Chinese banks can buy from overseas vendors.

Officials from the China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC) summoned a number of Western tech companies including Cisco, IBM and Microsoft earlier this month to inform them of its plans and to solicit comment about the return of the proposed bank procurement rules.

The original regulations, released back in January, required international tech firms to release secret source code and agree to audits before they could sell software to Chinese banks.

The measures were belived to be sparked by concerns over the NSA cyber spying scandal but they met with fierce oppostion from the US government and accusations of protectionism. They were eventually dropped in April only to be revived now, just prior to a first state visit to Washington from China president Xi Jinping.

International tech vendors make millions from selling software and hardware to state banks in China however these figures have fallen in recent months. And even if the proposed procurement rules are eventually relaxed, vendors are concerned that China's banks will be unofficially discouraged from buying foreign IT equipment, says Reuters.

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